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Thousands of Palestinians perform Friday prayers on Jerusalem streets

July 28, 2017 4:32 P.M. (Updated: July 28, 2017 5:16 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Thousands of Palestinians performed Friday prayers across the streets of occupied East Jerusalem after being prevented by Israeli forces from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

Israeli forces were heavily deployed across the city and around worshipers praying in the streets, as only men above 50 years of age and women of all ages were allowed into the compound.

Thousands performed prayers in the Wadi al-Joz neighborhood, Lions’ Gate area, Salah al-Din Street, and Damascus Gate area.

Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samari said in a statement that following the end of Friday prayer, “some youths started gathering at the end of Sultan Suleiman road,” which had been closed off to vehicular traffic, “and started throwing rocks at Israeli police, who responded very quickly and dispersed them in seconds.”

She added that “peace and security were maintained by Israeli police following the prayer.”

Meanwhile in the occupied West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed crowds of worshipers in the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem, after an estimated 200 people gathered to perform prayers in front of Israel’s illegal separation wall.

Israeli forces fired live ammunition, rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and sound bombs at Palestinian youth who threw rocks at the armed forces. At least one Palestinian was injured with live fire, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

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