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In photos: Palestinians make their way to Jerusalem for first Friday of Ramadan

June 2, 2017 10:44 A.M. (Updated: June 2, 2017 7:37 P.M.)
(MaanImages/Muhammad Sbeih)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Thousands of Palestinians began their journeys from across the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Israel on Friday to the Old City in occupied East Jerusalem, in order to perform prayers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the first Friday of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

Israeli forces deployed hundreds of soldiers at checkpoints leading to Jerusalem City, particularly in the Bethlehem area and the suburbs of East Jerusalem, in addition to hundreds deployed inside the Old City.

Spokesperson of the Palestinian Police Luay Irzeiqat told Ma’an that Palestinian police deployed dozens of forces near checkpoints leading to Jerusalem, particularly in Bethlehem and the West Bank-areas of the Jerusalem district to facilitate in the crossing of Palestinians through Israel’s network of military checkpoints.

Upon arrival to the checkpoints, hundreds of young Palestinian men were turned around, as Israeli authorities allowed the entry of only men above the age of 40, women of all ages and children younger than 11 years of age from the occupied West Bank.

Palestinian residents of the West Bank are not allowed to access occupied East Jerusalem or Israel without an Israeli-issued permits. Ramadan typically sees a slight ease of permit restrictions on Palestinians, particularly women, though the thousands who do get permits are still subjected to long waits and checkpoints and searches by armed Israeli forces.

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