JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli police say 44 individuals have been arrested and 20 officers have been wounded in an evening of chaos in Jerusalem, the place safety forces individually clashed with Palestinians indignant about Ramadan restrictions and Jewish extremists who held an anti-Arab march close by.
Tensions have spiked in current days in Jerusalem, which has lengthy been a flashpoint within the Israeli-Palestinian battle, and is residence to holy websites sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims. Residents braced for doable additional unrest forward of Muslim Friday prayers as police stepped up safety.
Palestinians have clashed with Israeli police on a nightly foundation for the reason that begin of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The tensions started when police positioned barricades exterior the Previous Metropolis’s Damascus Gate, the place Muslims historically collect to benefit from the night after the daytime quick.
Late Thursday, a whole lot of Palestinians hurled stones and bottles at police, who fired a water cannon and stun grenades to disperse them. Dozens of Palestinians have been wounded within the melee.
In the meantime, a far-right Jewish group often known as Lahava led a march of a whole lot of protesters chanting “Arabs get out!” towards the Damascus Gate. The present of drive got here in response to movies circulated on TikTok displaying Palestinians slapping spiritual Jews at random. Different movies made in response to them seem to indicate Jews assaulting Arabs.
Police used steel barricades to halt the far-right protesters just a few hundred meters (yards) from Damascus Gate. Later, they used water cannon, stun grenades and mounted police to push them again towards principally Jewish west Jerusalem.
Movies circulated on-line confirmed smaller clashes and fires elsewhere within the metropolis. One video confirmed what gave the impression to be a gaggle of Palestinians beating an ultra-Orthodox Jew close to Damascus Gate. They may very well be seen punching, kicking and throwing him to the bottom earlier than police chased them off.
The police assertion didn’t specify whether or not these arrested have been Palestinian or Jewish and didn’t consult with any particular situations of violence. The police didn’t instantly reply to a request for extra particulars.
Israel captured east Jerusalem within the 1967 struggle and annexed it in a transfer not acknowledged by a lot of the worldwide neighborhood. The Palestinians need east Jerusalem to be the capital of their future state. Its destiny has been one of the vital divisive points within the peace course of, which floor to a halt greater than a decade in the past.
1000’s of Palestinians have been anticipated to attend weekly prayers on the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Previous Metropolis afterward Friday. The positioning is the third holiest in Islam and the holiest for Jews, who consult with it because the Temple Mount.
The sprawling hilltop holy web site has been the scene of clashes on quite a lot of events over time, and was the epicenter of the 2000 Palestinian intifada, or rebellion.
Related Press reporter Ariel Schalit in Jerusalem contributed.