3 Palestinians killed during rallies in support of Aqsa Mosque
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At least three people have reportedly lost their lives during clashes in the occupied Palestinian lands as tensions remain high there in the wake of the Tel Aviv regime’s crackdown on Palestinian worshipers wishing to pray at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
Palestinian medical sources and witnesses, speaking on condition of anonymity, said a Palestinian teenager, identified as 17-year-old Muhammad Mahmoud Sharaf from the predominantly Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan on the outskirts of the Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds, was fatally shot in Ras al-Amud neighborhood of East Jerusalem al-Quds on Friday afternoon, Arabic-language Ma’an news agency reported.
Witnesses said Sharaf was shot in the neck by an Israeli settler, and later succumbed to his wounds.
Palestinian protesters arranged Sharaf’s funeral shortly after his death amid speculations that Israeli authorities might seize his body. Participants in the funeral chanted slogans in memory of the teenager, and in support of al-Aqsa Mosque.
Sharaf’s death came on the same day that a 7-year-old boy, whose identity was not immediately known, died after inhaling poisonous gas used by Israeli forces to suppress a demonstration in al-Ramm town northeast of Jerusalem al-Quds.
Elsewhere in the East Jerusalem al-Quds neighborhood of At-Tur, located approximately one kilometers east of the Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds, an Israeli settler shot and killed a 32-year-old Palestinian man.
Earlier on Friday, dozens of citizens were injured after Israeli forces violently attacked Palestinian worshipers, who are marking a “Day of Rage” outside the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in protest at increased Israeli security measures at the holy site, including the installment of metal detectors and cameras, following a deadly shooting attack late last week.
On July 14, three Palestinians opened fire on Israeli forces at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, killing two of them before being shot dead.
At least four people were injured near the Lion’s Gate, which is known as Bab al-Asbat in Arabic, on Friday.
Local sources, requesting anonymity, said nine citizens were injured during clashes in the towns of al-Eizariya, which lies in Area B of the occupied West Bank, as well as Abu Dis.
Additionally, a number of Palestinian civilians were wounded when Israeli soldiers fired live and rubber-coated steel bullets in Qalandia checkpoint and Salahuddin Street in central Jerusalem al-Quds.
Israeli forces also cordoned off the road leading to Qalandia refugee camp and fired shots to disperse a crowd of worshipers who had gathered there. At least 15 worshipers sustained gunshot wounds as a result.
About 30 citizens were also struck with rubber bullets during clashes in the central West Bank city of Bethlehem, located about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) south of Jerusalem al-Quds.
The occupied Palestinian territories have witnessed new tensions ever since Israeli forces introduced restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds in August 2015.
More than 300 Palestinians have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces in the ongoing tensions since the beginning of October 2015.
The Tel Aviv regime has tried to change the demographic makeup of Jerusalem al-Quds over the past decades by constructing settlements, destroying historical sites and expelling the local Palestinian population. Palestinians say the Israeli measures are aimed at paving the way for the Judaization of the city.
The al-Aqsa Mosque compound is a flashpoint Islamic site, which is also holy to Jews. The mosque is Islam’s third holiest site after Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.