Muslims riot in Jerusalem over weekend

May 9, 2021 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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Muslims rioted at several locations in Jerusalem over the weekend, including on the Temple Mount, as tensions mount toward the end of the month of Ramadan this week.

Police officers on guard at Temple Mount during Jerusalem day. May 13, 2018. Photo by Mati Amar/TPS

On the Temple Mount, Muslims rioted and threw rocks and bottles at police forces, who stormed the complex and dispersed the rioters. 17 police officers and tens of rioters were injured in the clashes.

During the riots, the Muslims chanted encouragement for Hamas’ military wing to strike at Tel Aviv and Kiryat Shemona and stated “in spirit and blood we will redeem Aqsa”

At Shaar Shechem, the Damascus Gate at the entrance to the Old City, hundreds of rioters attacked police forces with bottles, rocks, and fireworks, and the police responded with crowd control means.

Clashes continued in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood, where the rioters voiced support for Arab families living illegally on Jewish-owned land.

Police officers were attacked on Hagai Street and two suspects were arrested and taken for questioning.

Not far away, Arab threw rocks at policemen and one of them was hit in the face and was treated on the spot. A suspect in the assault of police officers was arrested and was transferred for questioning.

The Red Crescent medical service said it treated over 200 injured Arabs.

Muslims continued to riot on Sunday morning at the Lions Gate.

The Fatah Central Committee called for an escalation of the riots in Jerusalem and stated that “the public awakening and the struggle against the occupation and the settlers must continue.”

Islamic Jihad leader Ziad Nahala declared that “it is impossible to remain silent about what is happening in Jerusalem. The enemy must expect our response at any moment,” and Hamas leader Ismail Haniya warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “not to play with fire. This is a campaign in which you cannot win – neither you nor your army nor your police.”

Minister of Internal Security Amir Ohana held a special situation assessment on Saturday night together with Police Commissioner Yaakov Shabtai and Jerusalem District Commander Doron Turgeman, and other senior officials.

Shabtai noted that the police are “constantly working to enable freedom of worship, maintaining order and security. At the same time, we will not allow violent riots, breaking the law and harming police officers.”

“We ask everyone to calm the spirits and violence, especially on such an important day for the Muslim religion,” he added.

Tensions remain high as Hamas has promised a further escalation this week toward the end of the Muslim month of Ramadan.

Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal threatened that the 28th day of the Muslim month of Ramadan, on May 9, will be the turning point in the “great battle against the Judaization and control of Jerusalem, and the attempt to divide the use of the Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

The 28th day of Ramadan coincides with Yom Yerushalayim, Jerusalem Day, in which Israel celebrates the liberation and unification of Jerusalem during the 1967 Six-Day War.

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