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Clashes Break Out At Jerusalem Holy Site As Muslim Worshippers Return

Israel/Palestinian Authority -- celebrations after Al-Aqsa Mosque security relaxed, 27Jul2017

Clashes broke out at a sacred shrine in Jerusalem as thousands of Muslims rushed to pray after Israel removed security devices placed at the holy site two weeks ago.

Israeli police on July 27 fired tear gas and rubber bullets as Palestinians threw stones in the walled compound that is holy to both Muslims and Jews.

Palestinian health officials said at least 50 Palestinians were injured in the clashes near the Al-Aqsa mosque, with injuries coming mainly from stun grenades and rubber bullets.

Muslims refer to the site as the Noble Sanctuary, while Jews call it the Temple Mount.

Tensions have heightened since Israel imposed enhanced security measures, including metal detectors, at the site after two Israeli policemen were killed in a shooting there on July 14.

Muslim leaders on July 21 urged worshippers not to enter the compound until Israel removed the detectors.

On July 25, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu office said the detectors would be replaced by less-obtrusive means of surveillance, without providing details.

In response, Muslim leaders on July 27 told worshippers they could once again enter the mosque compound, ending the two-week-long protest.

Based on reporting by AP, dpa, and AFP