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Scuffles in Jerusalem in second night of violence

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Israeli police scuffled with Palestinians for a second night on Friday in occupied East Jerusalem, amid mounting tensions over a ban on gatherings and anger fuelled by videos posted of attacks.

The fresh violence came after clashes overnight Thursday, in which the Palestinian Red Crescent reported at least 105 wounded, of whom approximately 20 were transferred to hospital, while the Israeli police said 20 officers had been injured.

On Thursday, police had barred access to some areas where Palestinians usually gather in large numbers during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan – sparking confrontations outside one of the entrances to the walled Old City.

Tensions were fuelled by the arrival of far-right Israeli Jewish groups at the end of a march during which they harassed Palestinians and chanted “death to Arabs”.

After calm during daylight hours on Friday, skirmishes broke out again as thousands of Muslim worshippers left Al-Aqsa Mosque compound after evening prayers, when they found themselves confronted by dozens of armed police, including officers on horseback.

Clashes broke out between worshippers and police, with water bottles hurled at officers who fired stun grenades to disperse the crowd.

Hundreds of Palestinians also gathered Friday at the Qalandiya crossing between Jerusalem and the city of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank, police said.

In Bethlehem, also in the West Bank, Palestinians threw stones and petrol bombs towards the tomb of biblical matriarch Rachel, a shrine venerated by Jews and Muslims, they added. Source: Aljazeera

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