Cohen (R) and Franco. End of riots?
Photo: Guy Assayag
Security check on Temple Mount
Photo: Gil Yohanan

11 policemen injured by stones in Jerusalem

Police's fears of wide-scale riots during Friday prayer services on Temple Mount are not realized, but police and Border Guard officers lightly hurt by stones in east Jerusalem neighborhood. Police commissioner: Peak of tension behind us

Eleven policemen and Border Guard officers were lightly injured by stones hurled at them Friday afternoon by east Jerusalem residents in the Ras al-Amud neighborhood. Two suspected rioters were arrested.


The Jerusalem Police remain on a heightened state of alert in the capital, for fear of additional violent incidents. The police's main fear was of wide-scale clashes during the Friday prayer services, but the prayer without any unusual incident.


Police Commissioner Dudi Cohen said following the Friday prayer that "the peak of tensions is behind us. As of next week, all bodies must draw conclusions so that such events do not repeat themselves, including the Islamic Movement.


According to the police, some 100 people have been arrested since the riots in Jerusalem broke out about two weeks ago.


Jerusalem District Commander Aharon Franco said, "In the next day or two we'll try to go back to routine and return the Mount to routine as well." Franco explained that the Temple Mount would open to Muslim worshippers of all ageslater in the day, after being restricted to men over the age of 50, and to all worshippers – after the weekend.

Worshippers praying outside Temple Mount, Friday (Photo: Gil Yohanan)


Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch said that "this is an honorable accomplishment of the police, the Shin Bet and the Jewish and Muslim worshippers. It was important that this Friday ends peacefully after 10 days of a tense atmosphere.


"There were several incidents in Jerusalem, but a state of calm is being maintained in the north, south and mainly around the Temple Mount. Life must go back to normal, particularly on the Temple Mount."


The minister added that "it was important to arrest Sheikh Raed Salah, and I hope the message has been conveyed in order to maintain peace."


On Friday morning, dozens of Arab youths hurled stones at police and Border Guard forces in the east Jerusalem village of Sur Baher. There were no reports of injuries in this incident. the security forces dispersed the rioters and began arresting the stone throwers.


In the Gaza Strip, thousands of Palestinians held a rally in protest of the recent events in Jerusalem, following a Hamas and Islamic Jihad call to express the Palestinian protest against Israel's conduct on the Temple Mount. Similar rallies were held in Palestinian refugee camps in Syria.


Earlier this week, the Palestinian Authority declared a general strike in the West Bank in protest of the events. 


Ali Waked contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 10.09.09, 13:47
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