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Thursday, May 24, 2012 | return to: news & features, international


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Police break up Jerusalem march

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At least 30,000 people participated in the Jerusalem Day parade known as the Dance of the Flags on May 20, which led to some clashes between marchers and counter-protesters.

The route went in part through eastern Jerusalem before entering the Old City of Jerusalem and ending at the Western Wall, where participants sang and danced.

Hundreds of police and security personnel were deployed throughout the city for Jerusalem Day festivities marking 45 years since the city’s reunification.

Some of the marchers chanted anti-Muslim epithets. Police arrested at least 10 Jewish marchers for racist chants and five Palestinians for throwing things at the marchers.

Israeli lawmakers Michael Ben Ari and Uri Ariel of the right-wing National Union Party led a group of 20 on a tour of the Temple Mount. They reportedly attempted to kneel in prayer at the site and were stopped by police.

Palestinian religious leaders in Jerusalem called on followers to confront Jews celebrating Jerusalem Day in the capital and warned that the Jews would try to storm the Temple Mount and attack Muslims.

At the state ceremony marking Jerusalem Day, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged never to divide Jerusalem.  — jta


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