Trump’s Jerusalem stance sparks vi­o­lence on streets

Calls for new in­tifada as Pales­tini­ans clash with Is­raeli troops

The Press and Journal (Moray) - - NEWS - BY ILAN BEN ZION

Clashes be­tween Pales­tinian pro­test­ers and Is­raeli troops have erupted across the West Bank while demon­stra­tors in Gaza burned Is­raeli and US flags af­ter Don­ald Trump moved to recog­nise Jerusalem as Is­rael’s cap­i­tal.

The leader of the Ha­mas mil­i­tant group, which runs Gaza, called for a new armed up­ris­ing in a wide­spread show of anger over the US pres­i­dent’s move.

In the West Bank, crowds of pro­test­ers set tyres on fire and threw stones at anti-riot troops.

In the bib­li­cal town of Beth­le­hem, troops fired wa­ter can­nons and tear gas to dis­perse a crowd in clashes that could cloud the up­com­ing Christ­mas cel­e­bra­tions in the town of Je­sus’s birth.

In Ra­mal­lah, the seat of the Pales­tinian gov­ern­ment, pro­test­ers set tyres on fire, send­ing a thick plume of black smoke over the city.

Mr Trump’s dra­matic break on Wed­nes­day with decades of US policy on Jerusalem coun­ters long- FIRED UP: Pales­tini­ans burn posters of Is­raeli prime min­is­ter Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu and US pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump dur­ing protests yes­ter­day

stand­ing in­ter­na­tional as­sur­ances to the Pales­tini­ans that the fate of the city will be de­ter­mined in ne­go­ti­a­tions.

The Pales­tini­ans seek Is­raeli-an­nexed east Jerusalem, cap­tured by Is­rael in 1967, as a fu­ture cap­i­tal.

Pales­tini­ans closed their schools and shops yes­ter­day

to be­gin three “days of rage” over Mr Trump’s de­ci­sion. Ral­lies were un­der way in other West Bank cities, and a demon­stra­tion was be­ing held out­side the Da­m­as­cus Gate of Jerusalem’s Old City.

There were no se­ri­ous ca­su­al­ties re­ported in yes­ter­day’s clashes. But to­day,

the Mus­lim holy day, could pro­vide an im­por­tant test when Pales­tini­ans gather for weekly mass prayers.

In the Gaza Strip, Ha­mas’s leader Is­mail Haniyeh called on Pales­tini­ans to launch a new in­tifada, or up­ris­ing, against Is­rael.

“The Amer­i­can de­ci­sion is an ag­gres­sion on

our peo­ple and a war on our sanc­tu­ar­ies,” Haniyeh said in a speech. “We want the up­ris­ing to last and con­tinue to let Trump and the oc­cu­pa­tion re­gret this de­ci­sion,” he said.

The Is­raeli mil­i­tary said it would de­ploy sev­eral bat­tal­ions to the West Bank, while other troops

have been put on alert to ad­dress “pos­si­ble de­vel­op­ments”.

The con­flict­ing claims to Jerusalem, and es­pe­cially its Old City, where sen­si­tive Jewish, Mus­lim and Chris­tian holy sites are lo­cated, lie at the core of the Is­raeli-Pales­tinian con­flict.

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