Hundreds have been injured in fresh clashes in Jerusalem. Police have fired stun grenades and tear gas at stone-throwing demonstrators inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
Plans to evict Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem to make room for Jewish settlers have fueled protests that escalated over the weekend.
And today tensions are particularly high as Israel is marking – Jerusalem Day – the anniversary of when Israeli troops captured East Jerusalem in 1967. Amid growing international calls for calm, the UN Security Council is holding an emergency session to discuss the situation.
More than 200 people were injured, as crowds threw stones and officers fired stun grenades in response.
It comes amid soaring tensions in the city, which has seen weeks of unrest.
Earlier, Israeli police decided to bar Jews from visiting the compound where the mosque is located during the annual Jerusalem Day Flag March.
The event marks Israel’s capture of East Jerusalem – home to the Old City and its holy sites – in 1967, and usually sees hundreds of flag-waving Israeli youth make their way through Muslim areas, chanting and singing patriotic songs.
It is regarded by many Palestinians as a deliberate provocation. This year’s march is also taking place in the final days of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
The violence erupted ahead of a planned march to commemorate Israel´s takeover of Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War, an anniversary known as Jerusalem Day in the Jewish state.
On Friday night, more than 200 people were hurt in clashes between police and Palestinians on the esplanade where tens of thousands of worshippers had flocked for the last Friday prayers of Ramadan.
On Saturday, clashes in a number of east Jerusalem neighbourhoods left more than 100 people injured, said the Palestinian Red Crescent.
The four members of the Middle East Quartet — the US, Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations — expressed “deep concern” on Saturday over the violence in Jerusalem.