why is there violence in Gaza and Jerusalem? – fr

why is there violence in Gaza and Jerusalem? – fr

What sparked the latest conflict between Israel and Gaza?

For weeks, Palestinian protesters and Israeli police clashed daily in Jerusalem, a series of incidents during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan contributing to escalating hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians.

Far-right Israelis marched through East Jerusalem last month chanting “Death to the Arabs” amid tensions over Ramadan restrictions and online videos showing Palestinian attacks on Jews.

The impending eviction of Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem to make room for Israeli settlers has further inflamed anger. Israel describes it as a property dispute, but critics describe it as state-sponsored ethnic cleansing.

Middle East Minister James Cleverly said on Wednesday: “We urge Israel to stop such actions, which in most cases violate international humanitarian law.”

Clashes around the compound of al-Aqsa Mosque have seen Israeli police fire rubber bullets, tear gas and stun grenades inside what is Islam’s third holiest site. The complex is also home to the Dome of the Rock and the site of the Jewish Biblical Temple, of which only the Western Wall remains.

The control of Jerusalem in general and of the sacred hill compound in particular is a particularly emotional issue for many Jews and Palestinians.

What has happened so far?

Since Monday, Hamas and other Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip have fired more than 1,000 rockets at Israel, targeting civilian centers like Tel Aviv and Beer Sheva.

Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted most of the rockets, but at least 20 hit the house, killing several people, injuring more and damaging buildings, cars and other infrastructure.

Israel responded with hundreds of airstrikes on Gaza, a densely populated and built-up coastal strip in which militants have integrated themselves with civilian populations.

On Thursday evening, Israel appeared to declare the start of a planned offensive on the occupied Gaza Strip as Hamas continued to bombard the Jewish state with rocket fire.

“IDF air and ground troops are currently attacking in the Gaza Strip,” the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said in a brief message, pointing to the most serious escalation since the 2014 war.

Images appeared to show dozens of rockets raining down on the Palestinian enclave, however, the IDF later clarified that its troops had not entered the Gaza Strip as it had previously stated, accusing a problem of “Internal communication” of confusion.

At least 132 people have been killed in Gaza since Monday, including 32 children and 21 women, and 950 others injured, Palestinian medical officials said. Israel said that among eight dead were a soldier patrolling the Gaza border and six civilians, including two children.


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