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Palestinians rally for Jerusalem, 2 killed, one dies of wounds

23rd Dec 2017
Palestinians rally for Jerusalem, 2 killed, one dies of wounds

RAMALLAH, Palestine (AA) Two Palestinians were killed Friday and dozens more injured in clashes with Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

A Palestinian man succumbed to his wounds sustained in clashes with Israeli forces along the border between Gaza Strip and Israel last week, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry on Saturday.

Sherif al-Abd Shalash, 28, was injured last Sunday during rallies denouncing U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“He died of his wounds on Saturday,” Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra told Anadolu Agency.

In Ramallah, hundreds of Palestinians marched towards the nearby Bet Eil checkpoint, where five of them were injured by rubber bullets and three others suffered temporary asphyxia after inhaling teargas, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

In Bethlehem, meanwhile, hundreds of protesters marched towards the city’s northern entrance, where clashes erupted after Israeli soldiers attempted to break up the demonstration by force.

“Two Palestinians were injured with live ammunition, five were injured by rubber bullets, while 10 others were treated for temporary asphyxia due to teargas,” read a Health Ministry statement.

Clashes also broke out in different parts of Hebron (Al-Khalil), leading to the injury of two Palestinians by rubber bullets, according to the ministry.

In the central West Bank city of Salfit, several more Palestinians were reportedly hurt in clashes with Israeli forces deployed in the area.

“Two protesters were seriously injured after being shot in the back and the neck, respectively, with live ammunition,” the ministry said.

Similar demonstrations erupted following Friday prayers in the West Bank cities of Nablus, Tulkarm and Qalqiliya, in which at least six Palestinians were injured by live ammunition and eight others by rubber bullets, according to the ministry.

And in Jerusalem, Israeli police dispersed a rally inside the Old City, preventing marchers from reaching the Bab al-Amoud (Damascus Gate) area.

The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) reported that at least two people had been treated for injuries after having been beaten by Israeli police.

According to the PRCS, over 550 Palestinians were injured in separate clashes that erupted Friday across the West Bank.

In the blockaded Gaza Strip, meanwhile, two Palestinians were killed in violent clashes with Israeli troops, the Palestinian Health Ministry said in a statement.

“Zakaria al-Kafarhneh, 24, and Mohamed Muheisen, 29, were both killed after being shot during clashes that broke out on the border with Israel,” read the ministry statement.

“At least 123 Palestinians [in Gaza] were injured, including 55 by live ammunition,” it added.

Tension has mounted in the Palestinian territories since Dec. 6, when U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, triggering condemnation and protests across the Arab and Muslim world.

Since then, 13 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more injured in clashes with Israeli security forces in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the perennial Middle East conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — occupied by Israel since 1967 — might eventually serve as the capital of an independent Palestinian state.

[Photo:  Israeli security forces attack demonstrators who are protesting against U.S. President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, near Beit El Checkpoint in Ramallah, West Bank on December 13, 2017. Photographers: Issam Rimawi/AA]

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