Backtracking, police say Flag March won’t pass through Damascus Gate

In an about-face, police say the Jerusalem Day Flag March won’t pass through the Old City’s Damascus Gate and Muslim Quarter.

The last-minute decision comes as the annual march is already underway.

The alternate route will see the Jerusalem Day marchers redirected through Jaffa Gate to the Western Wall.

Earlier, all of Israel’s security services recommended that police change the planned route of the march in order to limit the chances of direct confrontations between the participants and the Muslim residents of the city.

During a situational assessment by Israel’s political leadership, the Israel Defense Forces, Shin Bet security service and Israel’s military liaison to the Palestinians all said they believe that the current route would likely result in violence.

According to Channel 12, Defense Minister Benny Gantz also called for the police to alter the route.

But police said they weren’t planning on changing the route, before backtracking hours later.

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