Palestinian medics say at least 50 people hospitalized in violent clashes with Israeli police at the site of the burning of a holy site in Jerusalem
JERUSALEM – At least 50 Palestinians have been hospitalized after being injured in clashes with Israeli police at the site of the burning, the holy site of Jerusalem, Palestinian medics said. Police fired tear gas and stunned canisters with bombs, some of them landing at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in Islam.
Israeli police said Palestinians threw stones, chairs and other objects at police officers.
Amateur videos posted on social media show police stunning grenades and tear gas in the Al-Aqsa Mosque during clashes between police officers and Palestinian rioters. THIS IS MAINLY UPDATED NEWS. THE ORIGINAL STORY OF THE AP IS BELOW
Israeli police on Monday clashed with Palestinian protesters at a shrine in Jerusalem, the latest in a series of clashes that pushed the disputed city to the brink of an eruption.
The latest violence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex followed days of growing tensions between Palestinians and Israeli authorities in Jerusalem’s Old City, an emotional zero of conflict. Hundreds of Palestinians and about two dozen police officers have been injured in recent days.
On Monday morning, the cops fired a tear gas and a shock bomb, and the protesters were shooting the police and other objects. Police said that protesters threw stones from the mosque complex on the adjoining road. Palestinians said police fired shock bombs into the complex.
Firas Dibs, a spokesman for the Islamic government or Waqf, who ran the site, said dozens of people were injured. The Palestinian Red Crescent said three people were taken to hospital.
The place, known to the Jews as the Temple Mount, and a noble refuge to the Muslims, is considered the holiest place in Judaism and the third holiest place in Islam. The merger is the epicenter of the conflict and has in the past been a trigger for circles of Israeli-Palestinian violence.
Earlier, police banned Jews from visiting the Al-Aqsa complex on Monday, which Israelis mark as Jerusalem Day with a parade waving a flag through the Old City and its Muslim quarter. Marchers celebrate the capture and annexation of East Jerusalem in the 1967 Middle East War.
A police decision to temporarily ban Jewish visitors from accessing the holy site came hours before the Jerusalem Day march began, which Palestinians widely perceive as a provocative display of Jewish hegemony over the disputed city.
Police allowed the parade to take place despite growing concerns that it could further inflame tensions.
This year’s march coincides with the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a time of heightened religious sensitivity, and follows weeks of clashes between Israeli police and Palestinians in Jerusalem.