Israeli forces arrest Palestinians including minors at Jerusalem's Damascus Gate

Israeli forces arrest Palestinians including minors at Jerusalem's Damascus Gate
Israeli forces arrested five children, one as young as 13, at Jerusalem's Damascus Gate as Muslim worshippers headed to Al-Aqsa Mosque for a commemorative event.
2 min read
19 February, 2023
Israeli forces frequently arrest Palestinians at Damascus Gate and the vicinity of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound [Getty]

Israeli forces on Saturday assaulted and arrested a group of Palestinians, including minors, at Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate.

At least seven people were arrested, according to the Turkish Anadolu Agency, including five children - one of whom was 13 years old.

The incident occurred as worshippers were headed to the Al-Aqsa Mosque to commemorate the Israa and Mi’raj, the mystical night journey of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad from Mecca to Jerusalem.

In videos shared online, Israeli soldiers wielding batons and assault rifles can be seen chasing a visibly distressed young Palestinian near Damascus Gate before arresting him.

Israeli forces assaulted other Palestinians as they attempted to suppress crowds who gathered at the holy site in order to mark the religious occasion, eyewitnesses told The New Arab's sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

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Israeli forces routinely apprehend Palestinians - including children - throughout the occupied territories, often violently.

In November last year, the Palestinian Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs (CDA) said that over 50,000 Palestinian children have been arrested since 1967 - the year Israel began its occupation of east Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Fear has grown among Palestinians of increased Israeli aggression following the return of right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the Israeli leadership, and his installation of the most right-wing government in the country’s history.

The Netanyahu cabinet has already carried out anti-Palestinian measures such as increased raids in the West Bank, illegal settlement expansions, and stripping Palestinians accused of "terror offences" of their residency permits and citizenship.