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Peres Unwelcome at Rachel’s Tomb

Foreign Minister Shimon Peres was forced to leave the site of Rachel’s Tomb on Monday when a group of worshipers protested his presence there.

Peres, who was accompanied by the chief rabbi of Jerusalem, Yitzhak Kolitz, came to Rachel’s Tomb to study future access to the site for Jewish worshipers.

The tomb, located north of Jerusalem, may fall under Palestinian stewardship in the next phase of self-rule in the West Bank.

Peres was briefed by Israel Defense Force officers about the various possibilities for ensuring the safety of Jewish worshipers at the site if and when the IDF redeploys from the area.

The issue of Rachel’s Tomb recently became a point of contention in Israel’s talks with the Palestinians, after some Israeli groups protested that the holy site should remain under Israeli authority in any future agreement with the Palestinians.

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