FACTBOX: Holy sites on the papal tour

Tue May 12, 2009 5:00am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Following is a list of holy sites in Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Nazareth that Pope Benedict plans to visit during his Holy Land pilgrimage.

JERUSALEM:

TEMPLE MOUNT/AL-HARAM AL-SHARIF (The Noble Sanctuary)

* Pope will visit on Tuesday morning.

* It is home to the gilded 7th-century Dome of the Rock, a fixture of the Jerusalem skyline, and built over the spot where Jews, Muslims and Christians believe Abraham was about to sacrifice his son to God before an angel stayed his hand.

The 8th-century al-Aqsa mosque also stands on the stone esplanade. Judaism's Western Wall, a Jewish prayer site believed to be a perimeter wall of the second biblical Temple, is below.

* In Muslim tradition, Mohammad ascended into heaven from the rock at the center of what is now the Dome of the Rock.

* The Temple Mount is the most sacred site in Judaism. Jews believe biblical King Solomon built the first temple there 3,000 years ago. A second temple was razed by the Romans in AD 70.

* Muslims see al-Haram al-Sharif as the third holiest site after the cities of Mecca and Medina in modern Saudi Arabia.   Continued...