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Sunday, 16 July 2017 00:22

Israel to reopen Jerusalem holy site after deadly assault

Written by  Associated Press

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel will gradually reopen a Jerusalem holy site Sunday after taking the rare step of shutting it down following a deadly assault there that sparked concerns of a fresh round of violence.

For the first time in decades, Israel closed the site — known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount — on Friday after an attack by three Arab citizens of Israel who opened fire from the sacred site with automatic weapons and killed two police officers before being shot dead inside the compound.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that following consultations with security officials the site would be reopened Sunday afternoon with increased security measures that included metal detectors at the entrance gates and additional security cameras to make sure that no weapons are smuggled inside again.

Israeli forces conducted a security sweep early Sunday and began installing the detectors. Given the large number of worshippers expected to enter the site, the new measures could slow movement and spark tensions.

The attack triggered a rare phone conversation between Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who condemned the attack and called for the site to be reopened. Jordan, a custodian of the sacred compound, also called for its immediate reopening.

Read more at Associated Press

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