Palestinians clash with Israel Police in Jerusalem near Damascus Gate

Written by on April 27, 2021

Hundreds of Palestinian youth gathered at Damascus Gate on Monday night to celebrate Ramadan. Police started to break up the crowd and disperse them when they began to cry: “In spirit and blood we will redeem Palestine,” and wave Palestinian flags, N12 reported.

One Palestinian was arrested by police, according to Palestinian media. 

According to the report, hundreds more passed through the gate on their way out of the Temple Mount without causing a disturbance. 

Another chant that was heard was “Thousands of shahid [martyrs] are on their way to al-Aqsa.” 

Elsewhere in Jerusalem, Molotov cocktails were thrown at IDF soldiers in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Isawiya, while fireworks were thrown at police forces in A-Tur. 

These clashes are not without precedent and context. On Sunday night, Arab youth threw bottles and rocks at Israeli police officers after they had removed the barricades around Damascus Gate, which were set up to prevent crowding and possible security breaches, especially when hundreds pass through the gate each day for Ramadan prayers on the Temple Mount. 

Also on Sunday, Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip called on their supporters to “escalate the uprising in Jerusalem” and to form a “unified leadership for popular resistance” against Israel. 

In the middle of the night between Sunday and Monday, three rockets were launched from the coastal enclave into Israel, adding up to a total of 40 since Friday. The IDF warned on Monday of a powerful response if the rockets kept coming. 

Last week, dozens of protesters, both Arab and Jewish, were arrested and/or injured in an intense showdown with police. 

As on Monday night, the protests took place near Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City. 

The massive showdown was the culmination of isolated incidents of violence across the city, which have occurred over the last few weeks. 

Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report. 

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