Temple Mount access restricted; IDF said circling home of terror leader in Jenin as unrest persists in West Bank, capital
(SOURCE) The Israel Police announced Sunday it would limit access to Jerusalem’s Old City and the Temple Mount compound over the next two days, following two terror attacks which left two Israeli men dead and injured three other people.
Meanwhile, the army was reportedly heavily deployed in the West Bank city of Jenin to apprehend a Palestinian terror leader. The IDF opened fire on the suspect’s home, according to the Ynet news website. It was not immediately clear if the suspect was arrested or hurt, and the operation was ongoing.
In a separate operation, the army was said to be circling the West Bank home of the Muhanad Shafeq Halabi, 19, the terrorist who killed two men on Saturday before police shot him dead.
The police on Sunday said only Israeli citizens, local residents, students, employees who work in the area and tourists will be allowed entry into the Old City through Tuesday.
On the Temple Mount compound, “Muslim prayer will be limited to males aged 50 and above while there will be no age limitation on female Muslim worshipers,” police said in a statement.
The Muslim worshipers will only be allowed in through the Old City’s Lions Gate.
The restrictions came hours after Nehemia Lavi, 41, and Aharon Bennett, 22 were fatally stabbed in the Old City. In a separate incident overnight Saturday-Sunday, a 15-year-old Israeli teenager was stabbed outside the Old City, sustaining moderate injuries. Both terrorists were killed by Israeli security forces.
Adele Bennett, the wife of the Aharon Bennett, was seriously hurt and their two-year-old baby was lightly wounded in the Saturday attack. The hospital said Sunday morning that Adele Bennett’s condition was stable after she underwent surgery, according to Israel Radio.
Israeli police and troops have beefed up their presence in Jerusalem and the West Bank, amid fears of continued Palestinian violence, as low-level fighting and attacks roiled the capital and West Bank Saturday night and Sunday morning.
Five people were hurt overnight in rock attacks in Jerusalem and the West Bank, according to Israel Radio.
In central Jerusalem, an Arab driver was attacked by Jewish youths near the Mamilla mall, according to police. In his escape, the man ran over a pedestrian, injuring him lightly.
In the same area, clashes broke out between Jewish right-wing activists and Palestinian youths, one of whom was sprayed with pepper spray, according to Walla. Police officers were searching for the perpetrator.
In the West Bank, an Israeli Arab came to the settlement of Kiryat Arba, outside Hebron, and said he had been attacked by Palestinians who mistook him for a Jew.
He was lightly injured. An ambulance taking him to a hospital was pelted with rocks and damaged. An army jeep that chased the stone-throwers was hit by a fire bomb and caught fire; the soldiers were not injured.
Near Beit El, an IDF post was shot at by gunmen, with troops returning fire. There were no immediate reports of injuries.