Israel Police, Palestinians Clash as Temple Mount Reopens to Jewish Visitors
i24 News – Confrontations between Israel Police and Palestinians erupted into clashes at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem as the holy site reopened to Jewish visitors on Thursday.
Access to the site was prohibited for non-Muslims from April 21 until the conclusion of Ramadan, but these visitors were permitted to enter on the morning of Israel’s 74th Independence Day.
Jewish visitors to the site reportedly refused to adhere to police instructions to only participate in discreet prayer and sang Israel’s national anthem, according to The Jerusalem Post.
Palestinians also allegedly threw objects at law enforcement and shouted inciteful slogans, Israel Police said.
The renewed clashes in the Old City arrive after weeks of heightened tensions and earlier violent confrontations between Palestinians and Israel Police at the holy site, which is known to Muslims as the Al-Aqsa mosque compound.
Hazem Qassem, spokesperson for Hamas, released a statement on the incident Thursday and said that “the panic and confusion… is evidence of [Israel’s] failure in battle with our people — the al-Aqsa mosque was and will remain Islamic, Arab, Palestinian.”
The Islamist faction warned earlier on Wednesday against the admittance of Jewish visitors to the site.