UN Chief Condemns Attacks In Old City Of Jerusalem

Patrice Gainsbourg
Julho 16, 2017

Israeli police say a shooting in Jerusalem΄s Old City has caused a number of casualties.

According to an agreement signed between the Tel Aviv regime and the Jordanian government - which administers Al-Aqsa Mosque - after Israel's occupation of East Jerusalem al-Quds in 1967, visits to the compound by Israelis are permitted but non-Muslim worship is prohibited.

Two Israeli policemen have been killed and a third wounded in a shooting attack near a sacred site in Jerusalem.

Jerusalem's top Islamic cleric was released on Friday after being detained by Israeli police following an attack at a sensitive holy site that killed two police officers.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the attack in a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, but also said closing down the area could have repercussions.

He added that holy sites would never have been violated like this if many Arab leaders did not consider Tel Aviv as their "gateway" to the White House.

The thousands who come to the mosque every Friday for prayers were turned away, and forced to pray in the streets under the close watch of armed Israeli forces.

The BYU Jerusalem Center sits halfway up Mount Scopus overlooking the Mount of Olives and the Old City, and it's about a 25-minute walk from the center to Lions' Gate.

Not long after the incident, the chief of the Israeli police confirmed the death of two male officers from wounds sustained in the attack.

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"This incident has the potential to ignite further violence".

He was referring to the start of Israel's occupation of east Jerusalem, which it later annexed in a move never recognised by the global community.

Israeli authorities are still working to identify the attackers, the Guardian quoted police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld as saying.

The Shin Bet, Israel's internal security service, said they were all Arab citizens of Israel who were unknown to the authorities. "For now, the restrictions on travel to the Old City have been extended through at least Sunday".

Netanyahu ordered that mourning tents in the Um El Fahm be banned, indicating the potential to sow tensions between Israeli Jews and the country's one-fifth Arab minority.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned the attack could spark more violence and urged all sides to avoid escalation.

Jordan is a controlling force over the Waqf, the Mount's Islamic custodians.

In addition, a Palestinian 18-year-old was killed on Friday by gunfire during clashes with israeli soldiers near Bethlehem in the occupied west bank, according to the palestinian ministry of Health.

The violence had greatly subsided in recent months.

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