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1 Palestinian injured with live fire in Bethlehem clashes

July 28, 2017 1:59 P.M. (Updated: July 28, 2017 4:33 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces clashed with Palestinians in the southern occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem on Friday afternoon, injuring several Palestinians, including one with live fire, shortly after Friday prayers.

150 to 200 Palestinians performed Friday prayers on a main street in Bethlehem, in front of Israel’s separation wall, as Israeli soldiers looked on from a watchtower.

Israeli forces fired live ammunition, rubber-coated steel bullets, sound bombs and tear gas, and sprayed water at Palestinian youth who threw stones at the armed forces.

The Palestinin Red Crescent said in statement that one Palestinian was injured with live bullets, two with rubber-coated steel bullets while 10 others suffered from excessive tear gas inhalation.

Israeli forces have been heavily deployed across occupied East Jerusalem and in “seam zones” across the West Bank in anticipation for widespread clashes after Friday prayers in response to Israeli measures at the Al Aqsa Mosque compound, the third holiest site in Islam.

Israeli authorities imposed new restrictions on the compound Friday morning, allowing men above the age of 50 and women of all ages to enter the holy site.

Clashes erupted at the compound on Thursday as Israeli forces suppressed thousands of Palestinians who had returned to the site after a near-two-week long civil disobedience campaign in which Palestinians refused to enter the site in protest of Israeli imposed security measures.

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