Israeli forces fire rubber bullets at Palestinians in Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa compound, injuring at least 14

Israeli forces fire rubber bullets at Palestinians in Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa compound, injuring at least 14
Israeli police stormed the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in east Jerusalem, violently clashing with worshippers who were marking the last Friday of the month of Ramadan.
2 min read
07 May, 2021
The Palestinian Red Crescent said that at least 14 worshippers were wounded [AFP]

Israeli police have fired rubber bullets at worshippers at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent.

At least fourteen Palestinians were reported wounded by the aid group, after police violently stormed the compound - the third holiest site in Islam - as Muslims marked the last Friday of the fasting month of Ramadan.

Many were injured in the head and eyes by rubber bullets fired by Israeli police, who hurled tear gas and stun grenades at worshippers.

A police spokesman confirmed to AFP that force was used to disperse the worshippers, alleging it was a response to stones and bottles thrown in their direction.

Spokesman Wasim Bader added that three officers were wounded and that police made an unspecified number of arrests.

Palestinian media outlets showed rows of Israeli security forces lined up in the area. Videos shared widely on social media showed scenes of chaos, whith worshippers scrambling for safety as police raided the compound.

Tens of thousands of worshippers are believed to have gathered at the sacred Al-Aqsa compound for the last Friday of Ramadan.

Tensions are running high in East Jerusalem, which Israel has illegally occupied since 1967, as protests continue over an eviction threat against four Palestinian families.

Thursday saw a second straight night of demonstrations in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood.

A years-long land dispute between Palestinian refugees and Jewish settlers in the district has become emblematic of what appears to be Israel’s attempts to change the demographic character of the city, drawing accusations of "ethnic cleansing" by rights groups and activists.

The United Nations has warned that the threat of forced eviction facing Sheikh Jarrah families could amount to "war crimes".

Agencies contributed to this report.

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