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Police vs. protesters at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount

In a new outbreak of violence at Israel’s most incendiary flashpoint, the Temple Mount, Israeli riot police fired stun grenades to disperse hundreds of stone-throwing Palestinian protesters. Riot police converged on the crowd and protesters ran for cover into the Al-Aqsa mosque. After a series of clashes, dozens of protesters were still inside the mosque by  mid-afternoon yesterday, throwing objects at police, though they did later disperse. Israeli police did not enter the mosque. In the inevitable charge/counter-charge, Israel's police chief accused a small group of extremists of trying to foment violence, adding, “The police will act with a strong hand against anyone who disrupts order on the Temple Mount and against those incite to riot”. And Nabil Abu Rdeneh, spokesman for Mahmoud Abbas said, “Jerusalem is a red line that Israel should not cross”. Friction in recent weeks stemmed from rumours of purported Israeli plans to allow Jews to pray at the site or dig under the compound. Israel has carried out archaeological digs nearby, but there is no evidence supporting specific Palestinian claims. The site itself has been under Israeli control since 1967, but is administered by a Muslim religious body, the Waqf. Read more: AP, New York Times


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