Israeli Police Attack Dozens of Worshippers in Al Aqsa Mosque

Wed Apr 05 2023
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JERUSALEM: Israeli police attacked worshippers in Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque in the wee hours of Wednesday, witnesses said.

Israeli police called the attack a response to rioting. The latest incident flickered protests across the occupied West Bank.

Meanwhile, the Israeli military claimed nine rockets were fired from Gaza toward Israel after sirens shrieked in southern towns.

Violence in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem had spiked over the past year. There is apprehension that tensions may escalate this month as the holy month of Ramazan coincides with Judaism’s Passover and Christian Easter.

On Wednesday, the Palestinian Red Crescent said that seven Palestinians sustained injuies from rubber-tipped bullets and thrashings in clashes with Israeli police during the storm of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound. It said Israeli forces prevented its doctors and medics from reaching the mosque.

An elderly Palestinian woman outside the mosque told Reuters that she was sitting on a chair reciting the holy Qur’an, when they hurled stun grenades and one hit her chest.

In a statement, Israeli police said it was forced to enter the mosque’s compound after masked agitators locked themselves inside it with fireworks, sticks and stones.

It said that when the police entered the compound, stones were thrown at them and firecrackers were fired from inside the mosque compound by a large group of agitators. The statement said that a police officer was also injured.

Friction at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, has set off violence in recent years.

Palestinian groups condemned Israel’s attacks on worshippers, which they called a crime.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh warned that the occupation against crossing red lines at holy sites would lead to a big explosion.

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