Liberman: Hamas, Iran making ‘great efforts’ to fuel Gaza clashes
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Liberman: Hamas, Iran making ‘great efforts’ to fuel Gaza clashes

Defense minister credits IDF troops for containing violent protests; army says shots fired at soldiers, none injured

  • Palestinians pull on a cable tied to a barbed-wire fence as they try to pull down a section of the fence with Israel, during border clashes east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
    Palestinians pull on a cable tied to a barbed-wire fence as they try to pull down a section of the fence with Israel, during border clashes east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
  • This picture taken from Kibbutz Nahal Oz across the border from the Gaza Strip shows an Israeli drone intercepting a flaming kite on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
    This picture taken from Kibbutz Nahal Oz across the border from the Gaza Strip shows an Israeli drone intercepting a flaming kite on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
  • Palestinians use slingshots to hurl stones toward Israeli forces during clashes near the border with Israel, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
    Palestinians use slingshots to hurl stones toward Israeli forces during clashes near the border with Israel, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
  • Iranians take part in a a rally in Tehran to mark Jerusalem Day on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/STR
    Iranians take part in a a rally in Tehran to mark Jerusalem Day on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/STR
  • A Palestinian uses a wooden racket to hit back a tear gas canister during clashes with Israeli forces near the border with Israel, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
    A Palestinian uses a wooden racket to hit back a tear gas canister during clashes with Israeli forces near the border with Israel, east of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)
  • An Israeli Merkava tank is seen along the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip near Kibbutz Nahal Oz on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
    An Israeli Merkava tank is seen along the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip near Kibbutz Nahal Oz on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
  • Iranians burn an effigy of US President Donald Trump dressed in an Israeli flag during a rally in Tehran to mark Jerusalem Day on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/STR)
    Iranians burn an effigy of US President Donald Trump dressed in an Israeli flag during a rally in Tehran to mark Jerusalem Day on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/STR)
  • Shiite militiamen carry a poster of Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei while stepping on a drawing of an Israeli flag drawing during a Jerusalem Day rally in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Ahmad Al-Rubaye)
    Shiite militiamen carry a poster of Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei while stepping on a drawing of an Israeli flag drawing during a Jerusalem Day rally in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Ahmad Al-Rubaye)
  • A firefighter attempts to extinguish a fire near Kibbutz Nahal Oz, along the border with the Gaza Strip on June 8, 2018, after it was sparked by a flaming kite flown by Palestinians from across the border. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
    A firefighter attempts to extinguish a fire near Kibbutz Nahal Oz, along the border with the Gaza Strip on June 8, 2018, after it was sparked by a flaming kite flown by Palestinians from across the border. (AFP Photo/Jack Guez)
  • Muslim protesters shout slogans during a rally marking Jerusalem Day outside the US Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, on June 8, 2018. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)
    Muslim protesters shout slogans during a rally marking Jerusalem Day outside the US Embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, on June 8, 2018. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)

The Times of Israel liveblogged Friday’s events as they happened.

Annual Gay Pride Parade kicks off in Tel Aviv

The annual Gay Pride Parade begins in Tel Aviv, with over 200,000 people expected to take part in this year’s event.

The parade is now in its 20th year.

Turkey blasts ‘anti-Islam’ Austria over imam expulsions

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey’s presidential spokesman on Friday lambasts Austria’s decision to expel up to 60 Turkish-funded imams and shut seven mosques as an “anti-Islam” and “racist” move.

“Austria’s decision to close down seven mosques and deport imams with a lame excuse is a reflection of the anti-Islam, racist and discriminatory populist wave in this country,” Ibrahim Kalin says on Twitter after Vienna announced the move in a crackdown on “political Islam.”

— AFP

Iran-backed militia marks ‘Jerusalem Day’ in Baghdad

Thousands of Iran-backed Shiite militiamen march through a main Baghdad street to mark “Jerusalem Day.”

The men in military uniforms carry posters of late Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and Supreme Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. They set an Israeli flag on fire.

— AP

Shiite militiamen carry a poster of Iran’s Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei while stepping on a drawing of an Israeli flag drawing during a “Jerusalem Day” rally in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Ahmad Al-Rubaye)

Syrians, Palestinians march through Damascus to mark Jerusalem Day

Scores of Syrians and Palestinians mark the Iran-backed Jerusalem Day by marching through the streets of Damascus while chanting anti-Israel slogans.

The protesters march from the Hamidyeh market in the old city of Damascus to the Umayyad Mosque and wave the Syrian and Palestinian flags.

Hamid Hassan, 73, a Palestinian, says that the Jerusalem Day “means a lot for us. Jerusalem is an Arab land and it’s the land of all religions.”

He adds: “We will continue to offer martyrs until we liberate it. We will never kneel.”

Syrian citizen Samah Abdullah, 42, says the issue of Jerusalem is the cause of all Muslims, adding that commemorating the day is a “motivation for us and for all Palestinians to restore the occupied land.”

— AP

Flaming kites from Gaza spark fires near border

Flaming kites flown from the Gaza Strip into Israel spark a pair of fires near the Gaza border.

One of the fires is near Kibbutz Nir Am, while the other is near the Kerem Shalom border crossing.

A soldier is reportedly lightly injured from smoke inhalation due to the second fire.

The fires come as the army prepares for weekly clashes along the border fence.

US ambassador praises marchers in Tel Aviv Gay Pride Parade

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman praises marchers taking part in today’s Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv.

He tweets that “promoting, protecting, and advancing human rights – including the rights of #LGBTI persons – has long been the policy of the United States.”

Report: Dozens of soldiers’ graves vandalized at Mount Herzl

Dozens of soldiers’ graves at the Mount Herzl military cemetery in Jerusalem are found vandalized, Channel 10 reports.

The Defense Ministry is looking into the incident.

https://twitter.com/news10/status/1005040692454940673

Germany says suspect in rape, murder of Jewish teen caught in Iraq

BERLIN — An Iraqi asylum seeker wanted over the rape and murder of a Jewish teenage girl in Germany has been arrested in Iraq, German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer says Friday.

Ali Bashar, 20, who is believed to have strangled Susanna Maria Feldman, 14, after sexually assaulting her, was “arrested by Kurdish authorities in northern Iraq at the request of German federal police,” says Seehofer.

— AFP

Police say Mount Herzl graves were repainted, not vandalized

Police say 107 soldiers’ graves at Mount Herzl military cemetery in Jerusalem were not vandalized but repainted to renew the lettering.

“The paint seen in the picture will be peeled off in the coming days,” police say, stressing “there is no suspicion of vandalism or damage to the headstones.”

4,000 Gazans mass at border, burn tires ahead of clashes

Approximately 4,000 Palestinians have arrived to the Gaza border and started burning tires, ahead of expected mass demonstrations along the security fence, the army says.

The protesters are spread out among five different locations.

Israeli troops fire a small number of tear gas canisters at the mobs of demonstrators. The protesters throw rocks at the troops’ jeep.

No injuries have been reported.

“The IDF is prepared with reinforcements along the Gaza Strip fence to defend the residents of the Gaza periphery and security infrastructure from attempted terror attacks by terror groups led by Hamas,” the army says.

— Judah Ari Gross

Gazans claim to down IDF reconnaissance drone

Gazans taking part in border clashes down an Israeli reconnaissance drone, Palestinian media reports.

The reported downing of the drone comes as thousands of Palestinians take part in clashes along the border.

100 Gazans said injured in border clashes

Approximately 100 Palestinians have been injured, the majority of them from tear gas inhalation, in thus far low level clashes along the Gaza border, according to the Strip’s Hamas-run health ministry.

One man was also hit in the face by an Israeli tear gas canister that was shot toward protesters, Palestinian outlets report.

— Judah Ari Gross

Report: Netanyahu refuses meeting with EU’s Mogherini

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has refused to meet with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, leading her to cancel her participation in a forum in Israel next week, Hadashot TV news reports.

The network says Mogherini requested to meet with Netanyahu when she is in Israel next week for the American Jewish Committee’s Global Forum conference in Jerusalem, but her request was denied.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini speaks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he arrives for their meeting at the European Council in Brussels on December 11, 2017. (AFP Photo/Pool/Eric Vidal)

Army: 10,000 Gazans taking part in border clashes

10,000 Palestinians are taking part in clashes along the Gaza border, during which a grenade and pipe bomb are thrown at soldiers, the army says.

It says a flaming kite appearing to carry explosive material was flown toward troops, but exploded in the air.

Palestinians also burn tires and throw rocks at Israeli soldiers and the security fence, and fly flaming kites toward the border in order to spark fires in Israeli territory, according to the army.

It says troops are using riot dispersal methods and live-fire, in accordance with IDF regulations.

386 Gazans said wounded in border clashes, including 5 seriously

The Hamas-run Gaza health ministry says that 386 people have been injured, five of them seriously, during mass demonstrations along the security fence.

The majority suffered from tear gas inhalation, the army’s primary less-lethal riot dispersal weapon, the ministry says.

— Judah Ari Gross,

Gazans wear Holocaust-style garb at border clashes

Several Palestinians don uniforms similar to those the Nazis forced Jewish prisoners and others to wear in World War II at clashes along the Gaza border.

Ahmed Abu Artima says, “We want to remind the world that the Israeli occupation is committing the same massacres that the Nazis committed.”

Six million Jews were systematically murdered by German Nazis and their collaborators in the Holocaust of WWII, wiping out a third of world Jewry.

Denials or attempts to minimize or mock the Holocaust are widespread in the Arab world.

— AP

Poland: US envoy nominee to be accepted despite remarks on Holocaust law

WARSAW, Poland — An aide to Poland’s President Andrzej Duda says Friday that if Georgette Mosbacher is appointed as the new US ambassador to Poland, she will be accepted, despite having made “unnecessary and mistaken” comments about the country.

Mosbacher, a businesswoman nominated by US President Donald Trump, attributed the rise of anti-Semitism in Eastern Europe to a law passed in Poland in January that criminalizes blaming Poland for Holocaust crimes committed by occupying Nazi Germany. The law drew angry reactions from Israel, which in turn triggered a wave of anti-Semitic rhetoric in Poland.

Warsaw has objected to comments that Mosbacher made Tuesday during a nomination hearing before the U. Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Krzysztof Szczerski says Friday that Duda will officially accept her credentials if she comes to Warsaw as the ambassador of Poland’s close ally.

If Mosbacher is sent to Poland “the president will accept her credentials despite those statements … which we find to be unnecessary and simply mistaken as far as the analysis of the situation goes,” Szczerski said on radio RMF FM.

Szczerski says Mosbacher will have a “much more nuanced opinion, a true opinion” that after she spends some time in Poland.

— AP

2 Palestinians reported killed in Gaza border clashes

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza says two Palestinians have been killed during clashes tody on the Gaza border.

It also says 525 people have been injured during the clashes, including 92 from live fire.

Liberman: Hamas, Iran making ‘great efforts’ to fuel Gaza clashes

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman credits IDF troops for their handling of clashes today on the Gaza border, which he says are backed by Hamas and Iran.

“The determination and professionalism of IDF soldiers on the Gaza border proves themselves. Despite the great efforts of Hamas and Iran, less and less terrorists are coming to our border,” tweets Liberman, thanking Israeli troops.

15-year-old Gazan said killed in border clashes

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza says a 15-year-old Palestinian was killed in clashes along the border.

He is the third Palestinian reported by the ministry to have been killed today.

Army: Shots fired at troops on Gaza border, none injured

The army says Palestinians in the northern Gaza Strip opened fire at troops on the border, striking an Israeli position.

It says no soldiers were injured in the incident.

Another Gazan said killed in border clashes

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza says another Palestinian was killed in clashes along the border.

He is the fourth Palestinian killed today, according to the ministry.

The ministry says 618 people have been injured in today’s clashes, including 618 from live fire.

Nasrallah says Hezbollah in Syria to stay

The leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah says his men will not leave Syria even if the whole world tried to force them to do so, adding that only a request from the Syrian government would prompt such a move.

Hassan Nasrallah’s comment comes during a televised speech he gave to hundreds of supporters who gathered in the village of Maroun el-Ras on Lebanon’s border with Israel to mark Jerusalem Day.

The close ally of Iran says Israeli claims that Iran is planning to resume uranium enrichment to wipe out six million Jews in Israel are lies. Iran and its allies don’t want to kill Jews, he adds.

“The day of the great battle” in the Middle East is coming, he says, as is the day “when we will all go and pray in Jerusalem.”

— AP

People carry flags of the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah (yellow) and Lebanese national flags during commemorations Jerusalem Day in the village of Maroun al-Ras, near the Lebanese-Israeli border on June 8, 2018. (AFP Photo/Mahmoud Zayyat)

Unarmed Palestinian caught crossing into Israel from Gaza

IDF troops arrest an unarmed Palestinian man who crossed into Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip, the army says.

The man was under surveillance before he breached the fence and was picked up shortly after crossing.

“No weapons were found on him,” the army says.

The suspect is handed over to the Shin Bet security service for questioning.

— Judah Ari Gross

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