Al-Aqsa mosque catches fire same time as Notre Dame cathedral

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Al-Aqsa Mosque Burns At Same Time as Notre Dame

A fire broke out in the guard's room in the compound of the Dome of the Rock, home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, in occupied Jerusalem.

A massive fire engulfed the historic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, on Monday.

The fire broke out in the guard room outside the al-Marwani Prayer Room Monday evening, according to a statement by the mosque's Islamic Waqf (Endowments) Department.

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Footage posted on social media showed smoke rising from the top of the Marwani Prayer room, also known as Solomon's Stables, as firefighters tried to extinguish the flames on top of the Temple Mount.

Al-Marwani prayer room is located underneath the south-eastern corner of the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound (Haram Al Sharif).

Al-Aqsa means "the farthest" in Arabic; a house of worship was built in the site because of a verse in the Quran describing the prophet Muhammad's "Night Journey", which says he went to the farthest mosque before ascending to heaven atop a flying horse named Buraq ("lightning, in Arabic)". It was quickly put out by the Waqf with no injuries or interior damage reported.

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It added: "The Presidency confirmed its solidarity and sympathy with our friends in France over this incident".

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warned against targeting the holy site. The cathedral's spire collapsed under the fire, which raged for hours.

The area has heavy security and has been at the centre of much of the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict. However, post the creation of Israel, it annexed a majority part of the Jerusalem, including Al-Aqsa Mosque, which was frowned upon by the worldwide community.

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Officials consider the Notre Dame fire an accident, possibly as a result of restoration work taking place at the global architectural treasure.

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