Jerusalem, Jul 18 (EFE).- Tensions between Israelis and Palestinians in Jerusalem were high Sunday after over 1,500 Jews entered the holy site of the Temple Mount or Esplanade of the Mosques to mark Tisha B’av, triggering clashes between the police and Palestinians.
Altercations and skirmishes took place overnight in the Old City and its surroundings after Damascus Gate was closed during an Israeli ultra-nationalist rally nearby.
The Palestinian National Authority and the Israeli Islamist party Raam, which is part of the new ruling coalition, condemned the entry of the Jews, who are allowed inside the temple but are barred from praying.
“The attacks by the Israeli occupation forces and settlers on the al-Aqsa Mosque and the worshipers are a serious danger to the stability and security of the region,” Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas said.
In the early morning, at least 1,600 Jews entered and prayed inside the temple, according to local media, provoking minor clashes between Israeli security agents and Palestinians.
A total of 30 people have been arrested over the past 24 hours, a police spokesperson told Efe.
In May protests and clashes between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at al-Aqsa mosque and the Old City during Ramadan were one of the triggers of a major military escalation between Gaza’s militias and Israel.
The flare-up, which extended over 11 days, claimed the lives of 255 Palestinians in Gaza and 13 Israelis. EFE