4 Palestinians killed in new wave of violence over US Jerusalem move

Friday, December 15, 2017

Print this page Email A Friend!


GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) — Four Palestinians were killed and hundreds wounded Friday in clashes with Israeli forces as tens of thousands demonstrated against Washington's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

President Donald Trump's December 6 announcement that he would break with decades of US policy and move the embassy to Jerusalem has stirred global condemnation, as well as demonstrations across Arab and Muslim countries.

On Friday three men were killed in clashes between Israeli troops and stone-throwing Palestinians.

Two died along the border of Israel and the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian health ministry said, after the Hamas Islamist group that rules the enclave had called for another "day of rage". A third Palestinian was killed in clashes north of Jerusalem after being shot dead in the chest by the Israeli army, the ministry said.

The fourth stabbed an Israeli border police officer near a checkpoint on the outskirts of the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, before being shot, police said.

The assailant, who later died of his wounds, wore what appeared to be a suicide vest, though it was unclear if it was operational.

The violence comes days before US Vice President Mike Pence is due to visit Israel, though he will no longer see Palestinian officials after they cancelled meetings in protest at the embassy move.

"We understand that the Palestinians may need a bit of a cooling off period, that's fine," a senior White House official said Friday. "We will be ready when the Palestinians are ready to re-engage."

Pence is expected to try to push the Israeli-Palestinian peace process forward after he lands in Jerusalem on Wednesday, US administration officials have said.

"Obviously the last couple of weeks in the region have been a reaction to the Jerusalem decision," said a second senior administration official.

Protests erupted across the West Bank after Friday weekly prayers, often a catalyst for clashes between young Palestinians and Israeli soldiers.

In Gaza, tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets and a few thousand clashed with Israeli forces along different parts of the border.

The Palestinian health ministry said 164 people were injured in Gaza, with five in serious condition, and more than 100 were hospitalised in the West Bank.

Israel's army said around 2,500 people were involved in "riots" in the West Bank and about 3,500 in Gaza.

Friday's deaths brought to eight the number of Palestinians killed in violence or air strikes since Trump's Jerusalem move.

Four men were killed in Gaza last week, two in protests. Two Hamas militants were killed in an Israeli air strike.

In Jordan, thousands of people also demonstrated on Friday in the latest round of protests called by the Muslim Brotherhood, burning Israeli and American flags.

The diplomatic fallout continued, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan calling Trump's decision a "bomb" thrown at the entire Middle East.

He called Israel a "terror state" and said: "Trying to make Jerusalem capital of a terror state is not a situation that can be accepted by Muslims."

The status of Jerusalem is one of the most controversial issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT