Muslim women ascend the steps toward the Dome of
the Rock that encloses a sacred rock which, in
Islamic teachings, is the place where the Prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven
to take his place beside Allah. This area, often described as the center of
the universe, is also the center of much controversy. It was Israeli Likud party
leader Ariel Sharon's (now Prime Minister) visit to nearby al-Aqsa mosque
which sparked the latest Palestinian intifada, or uprising.