Clashes Between Palestinians, Israeli Police In Jerusalem Leave Many Injured

Masked Palestinians prepare to launch incendiary balloons across the northern Gaza border toward Israel

Tensions have escalated in East Jerusalem since the start of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan in mid-April, with a series of events driving the unrest.

Israel Police decided Monday morning to bar Jews from entering Jerusalem's Temple Mount flashpoint holy site on Jerusalem Day, and were set to also rule on whether to allow a continuous celebratory parade by nationalist Jews amid warnings from security officials that the Flag March could lead to a further escalation in violence and calls from the USA to ensure calm.

Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of a future state in the occupied West Bank and Gaza.

The UN Security Council will discuss the issue later on Monday. A new date will be set in the next 30 days. "That is what we have done and that is what we will continue to do", Netanyahu said.

But he said that Israel firmly rejected pressure not to build in Jerusalem, a reference to opposition to construction on contested land.

Mohammad, a shopkeeper selling incense and prayer robes in the Old City, said Israeli police told him he must shut his doors Monday afternoon, when Israeli Jews plan to march with Israeli flags to mark Jerusalem's "reunification".

Sunday night saw fierce clashes between Palestinian protesters and police in Jerusalem.

But Jerusalem remained on edge ahead of a march planned for Monday to commemorate Israel's takeover of Jerusalem in the 1967 Six Day War, an anniversary known as Jerusalem Day in the Jewish state.

Officers responded with rubber bullets, stun grenades and water cannons.

Israeli police say they have been targeted with fireworks, rocks and other projectiles, causing several injuries.

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It was not clear who was behind the attack, but the government blamed the Taliban who said they were looking into the matter. Between 66,000 to 69,000 Afghan troops have been killed. "We have the greatest fighting force in the history of the world".

Israeli police take a Palestinian into custody during a protest at the Masjid al-Aqsa compound in East Jerusalem on Sunday.

The clashes that subsequently broke out saw at least 17 Palestinians wounded, majority by rubber-coated bullets, the Palestinian Red Crescent said. But the annual event is widely perceived as provocative, as hardline nationalist Israelis, guarded by police, march through the Damascus Gate of the Old City and through the Muslim Quarter to the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray.

That apparently did little to allay concern in Europe and among regional powers like Jordan and United Arab Emirates, which condemned Israel's conduct around East Jerusalem.

But there were signs the violence was beginning to spread.

Late Sunday, Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip fired four rockets toward Israel, setting off air raid sirens in the southern city of Ashkelon and nearby areas, the IDF said.

It also reiterated its support for the Palestinian people's legitimate rights to establish an independent Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders.

Jordan on Saturday denounced Israel's attacks on Palestinian worshippers at Al-Aqsa Mosque, urging the global community to exert pressure on Israel to stop its violations. Israeli authorities have defended their actions as maintaining security, but Muslims accuse Israel of threatening their freedom to worship. "Let's stop these clashes", Pope Francis said to the crowds in St Peter's Square, calling on all sides to respect Jerusalem for its multicultural identity.

With tensions high, the Israeli Supreme Court postponed a decision on the possible evictions in Sheikh Jarrah.

The fate of East Jerusalem goes to the heart of the Israel-Palestinian conflict, with both sides claiming the right to it. Israel effectively annexed East Jerusalem in 1980, in a move not recognised by the vast majority of the worldwide community, and considers the entire city its capital.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE), which normalized relations with Israel a year ago, "strongly condemned" the clashes and the potential evictions, and urged Israeli authorities to reduce tensions. His opponents are now working to build an alternate government.

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