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Protests as Jerusalem Marathon passes through Palestinian neighborhood

March 13, 2015 4:38 P.M. (Updated: March 14, 2015 3:05 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Thousands of Israeli and international runners took part in the Jerusalem Marathon on Friday, attracting protesters on segments of the marathon running through occupied East Jerusalem.

Palestinians from Jerusalem protested against the marathon in the al-Musrara neighborhood near the Old City, waving Palestinian flags and proclaiming slogans supporting Palestinian claims to Jerusalem. They also held aloft pictures of President Mahmoud Abbas.

The marathon was organized by the Israeli municipality, which is used by the Israeli government to administer both West Jerusalem and Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem.

Participants in the marathon ran through West Jerusalem as well as segments of Palestinian East Jerusalem, including along the walls of the Old City and historical sites.

The Israeli police closed the entrances of the Old City and its streets early Friday in preparation for the marathon.

The Israeli municipality said that part of the marathon's revenues will be donated to cancer patients and people with special needs.

East Jerusalem is internationally recognized as Palestinian territory, but Israel occupied it in 1967 and later annexed it in a move never considered legitimate abroad.

Palestinians in East Jerusalem lack citizenship rights and are instead classified only as "residents" whose permits can be revoked if they move away from the city for more than a few years.

Jerusalem Palestinians face discrimination in all aspects of life including housing, employment, and services, and are unable to access services in the West Bank due to the construction of Israel's separation wall.
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