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Thousands of Israeli forces to deploy in Jerusalem for Friday prayers

July 2, 2015 9:41 P.M. (Updated: July 3, 2015 11:09 A.M.)
Damascus Gate at sunset.(MaanImages/Anna Kokko)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Israel will deploy thousands of police officers, border guards, and special forces in East Jerusalem on Friday as Palestinians head to the Al-Aqsa Mosque for prayers.

Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said preparations for the thousands of worshipers will begin at dawn.

Between 6.30 a.m. and 5 p.m. roads around the Old City, Wadi al-Joz, Nablus road, and Salah al-Din street will be closed.

New restrictions imposed on Tuesday will be in place, meaningwomen aged between 16 and 30 will need permits to enter Jerusalem.

The same applies for men aged 30-50, while those under the age of 12 and over 50 can enter without a permit.

The announcement was made after severalattacks targeting Israeli military and settlers.

Ramadan often offers a rare opportunity for Palestinians to visit East Jerusalem, part of the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel, as entry to the city remains strictly limited during the rest of the year.

Over 350,000 worshipers performed Friday prayers in the Al-Aqsa mosque last Friday.

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