Hours after Hamas and Islamic Jihad officials exhorted Palestinians to declare a Third Intifada against Israel, violent demonstrations flared up Friday in several locations throughout Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, resulting in multiple Israeli injuries.
Friday marked the 13th anniversary of the outbreak of the second Palestinian Intifada against Israel’s rule in the West Bank and Gaza.
In Jerusalem, three Israeli border policemen were lightly injured by young Palestinian stone throwers during a protest near the Old City’s Damascus Gate. Thirteen Palestinians were arrested over the disturbances.
Another policeman was injured by stones during clashes in the Arab neighborhood of Shuafat. Four Palestinians were arrested in relation to that incident.
Also Friday, an IDF soldier was lightly wounded by a stone hurled at him near the village of Beit Ummar, north of Hebron. The soldier was treated by a military medical team at the spot and did not require additional medical assistance.
Dozens of Palestinians in Hebron pelted a military checkpoint with stones and lit nearby garbage canisters on fire. The IDF responded by firing rubber bullets at the protesters. At least four Palestinians were lightly injured by IDF bullets, the Associated Press reported.
Later, stone throwers targeted an Israeli vehicle near the West Bank village of Ni’lin, outside Ramallah. One Israeli citizen was injured. He was taken to Tel Hashomer hospital and treated for minor wounds.
The IDF also reported that it had detained two Palestinians carrying fire bombs near Bethlehem.
IDF soldiers also dispersed a demonstration outside the Ofer prison near Ramallah, Palestinian Ma’an News Agency reported. According to the agency, Palestinians threw rocks and burned tires outside the facility and the IDF responded with tear gas, stun grenades and rubber bullets. Several Palestinians suffered light injuries during the clashes.
In northern Gaza, the IDF dispersed a demonstration of Palestinians who were marching toward the Israeli border fence, reported AP. The army said troops fired tear gas to break up the crowd of around 300 protesters.
Israel, which withdrew from the Strip in 2005, considers the Hamas-run territory to be a hostile entity. It has carried out two large military operations there in response to terrorist rocket attacks in recent years. The border area has relatively quiet save for sporadic rocket fire since a weeklong Israeli military offensive last November.