Moroccan Gate (Bab al-Magharib)

Inside view of the Moroccan Gate

Inside view of the Moroccan Gate

This gate, along the western wall of Masjid al-Aqsa, is known as the Moroccan Gate. It was named after the residents in the adjacent neighbourhood, who after the conquest by Salahuddin Ayyubi had come to live in Jerusalem from Morocco. The gate is also known as the ‘Gate of the Moors’.

  • The Moroccan Gate is actually built on top of another gate from the Herodian period known as Barclay’s Gate. Over the years, the ground level outside this initial gate rose several meters until it was eventually walled up in the 10th century.
Sign at the Moroccan gate

Sign at the Moroccan gate

  • During the 12th century (or perhaps later), a new gate was created at the new ground level and named the Moroccan Gate. It led out to the area in front of the Western Wall which at the time was occupied by settlers from north Africa. This area was destroyed by the Israelis after the 1967 war and the inhabitants made into refugees.
Moroccan Gate bridge

The ramp outside leading to the Moroccan Gate

  • There is currently a wooden ramp (see above) that gives direct access from the Western Wall area to the Moroccan Gate. This is the only place from where non-Muslims can get access into Masjid al-Aqsa.
View into al-Aqsa from the Moroccan Gate

View into al-Aqsa from the Moroccan Gate


References: HUMA’s travel guide to Palestine, A guide to al-Aqsa mosque – PASSIA, Wikipedia

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