Israel – Dozens hurt in a clash between Israeli Police and Palestinians
At least 163 Palestinians and six Israeli police officers have been hurt in clashes in Jerusalem, Palestinian medics and Israeli police say. Most were injured at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, where Israeli police fired rubber bullets and stun grenades as Palestinians threw stones and bottles. Tensions have been rising over the potential eviction of Palestinians from land claimed by Jewish settlers.
Tension has mounted in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, with nightly clashes in East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah – a neighbourhood where numerous Palestinian families face eviction in a long-running legal case.
Tens of thousands of Palestinians packed into the hilltop compound surrounding the mosque earlier on Friday for prayers. Many stayed on to protest against the evictions in the city at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Sunday night is Laylat al-Qadr or the Night of Destiny, the most sacred in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Worshippers will gather for intense nighttime prayers at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City, a flashpoint site sacred to both Muslims and Jews, who refer to it as the Temple Mount.
Sunday night is also the start of Jerusalem Day, a national holiday in which Israel celebrates its annexation of east Jerusalem and religious nationalists hold parades and other celebrations in the city. On Monday, an Israeli court is expected to issue a verdict on the evictions.