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Israeli forces attack Palestinian families at Damascus Gate

Israeli forces attack Palestinian families at Damascus Gate
2 min read
19 October, 2021
Palestinians in East Jerusalem faced rubber bullets, tear gas, and sound grenades, fired by Israeli forces, who descended on gathering families.
At least 49 people were wounded in the attack [Getty]

The Damascus Gate and the surrounding areas of occupied East Jerusalem were witness to violence on Tuesday, when Israeli forces stormed the area, for the second day in a row. 

At least 49 Palestinians were wounded during the attack, and a further 10 were arrested by the occupation forces. 

Families, with their children, were gathered at the Damascus Gate, to celebrate the birthday of the Prophet when Israeli forces entered the public space and began to attack civilians with batons, while also indiscriminately firing tear gas and sound bombs. 

It was also reported that medical staff were targeted by the attacking forces. 

Medical staff who spoke with local media, reported that five people were treated for wounds resulting from rubber-coated metal bullets, with 19 other injured by shrapnel from sound bombs.

Dozens of other were treated for injuries sustained during physical assaults. 

Anger among Palestinians is high following the desecration of graves in a historic Muslim cemetery, to make way for a national park, which is to be built on the site. 

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The latest round of excavations, order by the Jerusalem Municipality, began at the cemetery on 10 October.

The attacks and raids on Palestinians in public spaces have increased since the excavations started, particularly in occupied East Jerusalem, including Damascus Gate and Salah al-Din Street.

“Damascus Gate near the Old City of Jerusalem is a place where young Palestinians like to gather in the evening and socialise with their friends but, for the last few months, Israeli police and special forces have been violently forcing them to disperse to make way for Israeli settlers entering the Old City," Jawad Siam, a monitor of violence in East Jerusalem for the Wadi Helweh Centre explained to Al Jazeera.

According to the Wadi Helweh Centre, more than 82 minors have been arrested by Israeli forces over the past two weeks, with a significant portion of them under 13-years-old.