jerusalem: Clashes erupt once more close to flashpoint Jerusalem holy website

JERUSALEM: Israeli police on Sunday entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem‘s Outdated Metropolis to safe the best way for Jewish guests to the flashpoint holy website, fuelling clashes that left 17 Palestinians wounded, in response to Palestinian medical employees.
The unrest occurred simply two days after clashes with Palestinians on the identical website. Violence in Jerusalem between Israeli safety forces and Palestinian demonstrators a yr in the past escalated into an 11-day Gaza warfare.
The hilltop compound housing the mosque is the third-holiest website in Islam, whereas it’s the holiest place for Jews, who check with it because the Temple Mount. The competing claims to the positioning have sparked quite a few rounds of violence.
This yr the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, Christian holy week culminating in Easter Sunday and the weeklong Jewish Passover are all occurring on the identical time, with tens of hundreds of tourists flocking to town after coronavirus restrictions have been principally lifted.
Israeli police accused Palestinians of “defiling and desecrating” a holy website, whereas Palestinian officers accused Israel of making an attempt to divide the delicate holy website. “What occurred in Al-Aqsa Mosque is a harmful escalation, the repercussions of that are to be borne by the Israeli authorities alone,” stated Nabil Abu Rdeneh, spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Police stated they entered the compound to facilitate the routine go to of Jews to the holy website.
They stated Palestinians had stockpiled stones and arrange obstacles in anticipation of violence. The police stated they have been dedicated to making sure freedom of worship for Jews and Muslims.
The police cleared Palestinians out of the sprawling esplanade exterior the mosque itself early Sunday, whereas dozens of Palestinians remained contained in the constructing chanting “God is Biggest”.
Video launched by police confirmed small teams of youths throwing stones, in addition to fireworks being fired from contained in the mosque.
Palestinians reported temporary clashes with Israeli police simply exterior the mosque compound, whereas police stated Palestinians had thrown stones at visiting tour buses exterior the Outdated Metropolis, frivolously wounding some passengers.
Police launched a video displaying a crowd of youths pelting a passing bus with stones simply exterior the Outdated Metropolis. One other video from the police, taken inside one of many buses, confirmed Jewish households sitting on the ground of the car because it continued on its means.
The Palestinian Red Crescent medical service stated 17 Palestinians have been wounded, together with 5 individuals who have been hospitalised. Israeli police reported 9 arrests. By noon, witnesses stated police had moved out of the compound.
Beneath longtime understandings, Jews are allowed to go to the Temple Mount however are barred from praying there. For many years, Jews prevented worship there for non secular causes.
Israeli authorities say they’re dedicated to sustaining the established order, however lately massive teams of nationalist and non secular Jews have often visited the positioning with police escorts, one thing the Palestinians view as a provocation.
The variety of guests typically rises throughout non secular holidays. Palestinian officers stated almost 550 Jewish guests entered the compound, in comparison with just some dozen on most days.
Such practices have fuelled considerations amongst Palestinians that Israel is plotting to take over the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound or partition it. Israel strongly denies such claims, saying it’s dedicated to defending freedom of worship for all.
Clashes erupted on the website earlier than daybreak on Friday after police stated Palestinians had hurled stones towards the Western Wall, an adjoining Jewish holy website. Police entered in power and clashed with dozens of Palestinians shortly after daybreak prayers.
Israel captured east Jerusalem, which incorporates the Outdated Metropolis, together with the West Financial institution and Gaza within the 1967 warfare. The Palestinians need a future state in all three territories.
Israel annexed east Jerusalem in a transfer not recognised internationally and is constructing and increasing settlements within the occupied West Financial institution. Hamas controls Gaza, which has been underneath an Israeli and Egyptian blockade for the reason that Islamic militant group seized energy there in 2007.
A radical Jewish group just lately known as on folks to carry animals to the positioning in an effort to sacrifice them for Passover, providing money rewards for individuals who succeeded and even tried. Israeli police work to forestall such actions, however the name was extensively circulated by Palestinians on social media, together with requires Muslims to forestall any sacrifices from happening.
Israeli police accused Palestinians of spreading disinformation on social media, heightening the tensions.

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