Six killed in Jerusalem shrine row

Six killed in Jerusalem shrine row

Six killed in Jerusalem shrine row

TWO Palestinians have been shot dead by Israeli forces in Jerusalem today, medics have announced.

Israeli police said rioters threw rocks and firebombs and set off fireworks in the direction of the security forces, endangering them.

A Palestinian sneaked into a home in the West Bank Israeli settlement of Halamish after nightfall on Friday (local time) and stabbed to death three Israelis.

The killings came as Palestinians and Israeli security forces clashed after security restrictions were placed on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas asked the United States to "intervene urgently" and compel Israel to remove the metal detectors.

Palestinians are angry because metal detectors have been put in place at the entrance of the Al Aqsa Mosque - one of the holiest sites in Islam.

Egyptian authorities on Friday urged Israel to ease tension after metal detectors were installed at the gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque, the foreign ministry said.

About 3,000 officers were deployed around the Old City, barring entry to Muslim men under the age of 50, except for area residents.

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Palestinians rolled burning tyres and threw stones at forces who responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.

An Israeli military official said a grandfather and two of his children died, while the grandmother was wounded.

A second Palestinian was also confirmed killed by live fire during the demonstrations that followed Friday prayers, officials at a hospital in Jerusalem told AP news agency.

Israel asserts there is no change to the status quo and that the metal detectors are necessary to stop further attacks.

Despite worldwide pressure to remove the metal detectors, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's security cabinet decided in Friday's early hours to keep them in place, saying they were needed to prevent arms being smuggled into the shrine.

Disputes over the 37-acre (15-hectare) walled, hilltop platform in Jerusalem's Old City have triggered several major confrontations in the past.

The Friday clashes erupted after Israel refused to back down in the face of protests and remove the metal detectors.

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