Jerusalem Al-Aqsa clashes wound 10, say medics

JERUSALEM – Clashes between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli police wounded 10 protesters on Sunday morning in and around Jerusalem's flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, the site of major clashes two days earlier.

Early on Sunday morning, "hundreds" of Palestinian demonstrators started gathering piles of stones, shortly before the arrival of Jewish visitors to the site, the police said.

Jews are allowed at certain times to visit, but not to pray, at the site, also known as Temple Mount, the holiest place in Judaism and third-holiest in Islam.

The police said its forces had entered the compound in order to "remove" the demonstrators and "re-establish order".

The Palestinian Red Crescent said its medics had treated 10 wounded.

"Eight people were wounded in the [police] incursion and two others by rubber-coated bullets," it said, adding that three were taken to hospital.

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An AFP team near the entrance to the compound saw ambulances, heavily armed police and concrete blocks smashed into smaller pieces.

Elsewhere in the city, Palestinian youths threw rocks at passing buses, lightly injuring five Israelis, according to local media and the police, who said they had arrested two Palestinians.

The latest tensions in Jerusalem come as all three Abrahamic faiths mark major festivals: Jewish Passover, Christian Easter and the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Weeks of mounting tensions saw two deadly attacks by Palestinians in or near the Israeli coastal city of Tel Aviv in late March and early April, alongside mass arrests by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank.

On Friday morning, police clashed with Palestinians in the Al-Aqsa compound, including inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque, drawing strong condemnation from Muslim countries.

The violence wounded some 150 people.

The United Nations has called for calm, a year after the last major conflict between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza.

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