Three Palestinians Killed in Clashes With Israel as Thousands Protest Over Temple Mount

Clashes have taken place in Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as a result of new security measures installed at the Temple Mount complex in response to Sunday's attack that left two police officers dead

Tear gas fumes billow as Palestinian protesters flee during clashes with Israeli forces after Friday prayers at the main entrance of the West bank city of Bethlehem on July 21, 2017.
Tear gas fumes billow as Palestinian protesters flee during clashes with Israeli forces after Friday prayers at the main entrance of the West bank city of Bethlehem on July 21, 2017. Nasser Shiyoukhi/AP

Three Palestinians were killed on Friday in clashes between protestors and Israeli security forces in East Jerusalem, Palestinian sources have reported. Israel's military say over 3,000 took part in protests throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem on Friday. Clashes also erupted between protestors and Israeli forces in the south of the Gaza Strip.

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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday ordered the suspension of all official contact with Israel until it removed new security measures at a Jerusalem holy site. 

Over 300 were reportedly wounded in the protests that were held in response to new security measures put in place at Jerusalem's Temple Mount following Sunday's attack at the site in which two police officers were killed. In total 27 people were arrested, 10 in Jerusalem and 17 in the West Bank.

Mourners carry the body of Mohammad Abu Ghannam during his funeral in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of A-Tur, July 21, 2017.
AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS

The Red Crescent says that while the majority of the Palestinians suffered tear gas inhalation, 38 were treated for wounds from live fire and rubber bullets in Jerusalem. It says another 66 were hospitalized in the West Bank for wounds sustained from the munitions. 

According to Palestinian reports, 19-year-old Mohammad Hassan Abu Ganem died after being wounded at clashes in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of A-tur. His death has been confirmed by Israel's police. Prior to that, 18-year-old Muhammad Sharaf died after being shot in the neck in the Ras al-Amud neighborhood of East Jerusalem, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society reported. Most recently, 18-year-old Mohammad Lafi was confirmed dead at Ramallah Hospital after being shot in the chest with live rounds in Abu Dis.

>>Analysis: Israeli Defense Chiefs Believe Metal Detectors Not Worth the Bloodshed>> Analysis: Temple Mount Protests Could Turn Into an Intifada in the Blink of an Eye>>

Jordanians carry a model of the Dome of the Rock mosque during a demonstration, called for by the Islamic Action Front, in Amman following Friday prayers on July 21, 2017
KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP

The police say clashes began in dozens of locations in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. According to the IDF, over 3,000 took part in the protests in which rocks and molotov cocktails were thrown at Israeli security forces which attempted to disperse demonstrators using tear gas and stun grenades. Rubber bullets and live fire were also used.

Jerusalem resident Hashem Abu Diab, 60, said the dispute has united Jerusalem's Palestinians who consider the compound a last sanctuary from Israel's 50-year occupation of the eastern part of the city.

"The Al Aqsa Mosque is the last place we have in this country," he said. "If Al Aqsa goes, we lose everything. We don't leave until they remove the metal detectors."

Mohammed Hussein, the mufti of Jerusalem, said Muslims must not enter the Temple Mount compound until Israel has removed the metal detectors.

"We are exhausting Israel because all their military and intelligence are in the streets," he said." We are steadfast and we will not back off."

Israeli police said in a statement that the metal detectors will remain in place for the time being.

International protests

Dozens of protesters gathered in front of the Neve Shalom synagogue in Istanbul on Thursday night to rally against Israel’s decision to install the metal detectors at entries to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. The protesters, who were seen kicking the synagogue’s gates and throwing stones, chanted, “if you don’t let us into our places of worship, we won’t let you into yours."

Turkey's prime minister says the country is in dialogue with Israel to end a crisis surrounding a holy shrine revered by Muslims and Jews.

Speaking in Ankara after Friday prayers, Binali Yildirim said worship at the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem would be made difficult if each person is searched at entry.

Meanwhile thousands of Jordanians took to the streets of Amman on Friday in protest of the restrictions implaced at the prayer site.

Thousands of Yemenis, mostly supporters of the country's Shiite Houthi rebels who are at war with the internationally recognized government, have also rallied in support of Palestinians clashing with Israeli troops in Jerusalem.

The demonstration took place in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa on Friday, with the protesters chanting anti-Israeli and anti-American slogans.

Similiar protests have also been reported in Lebanon and Malaysia.