Israeli Police Remove East Jerusalem Barricades to Ease Tensions

Israeli police have now removed the barricades outside East Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate on Sunday, following violent riots last week.

Palestinians can now access the tiered plaza to gather for the fasting month of Ramadan, after Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai had the barriers removed, in a move to ease tensions. 

Lawmaker Ahmad Tibi from Israel’s Arab minority said, “The decision to reopen is right. It is a good decision in the right direction, but they should stop attacking Palestinians,” he told Reuters. 

Tensions heightened on Thursday when far-right Israeli groups marched towards Damascus Gate chanting “death to Arabs,” as more than 100 Palestinians were injured in clashes and 50 were arrested after. 

On Sunday, Palestinians were seen taking down the barricades after evening prayers for Ramadan. 

A spokesperson from Israeli police said, “It was ordered to remove the barriers after consultations with religious authorities, local leaders and shop owners,” adding that the move was “to ensure peace and security for all.”

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