Peak tensions in Jerusalem following Friday prayers at Temple Mount

Friday prayers went without any serious incidents as thousands of police officers deployed throughout the Old City are on high alert fearing riots as the Muslim worshippers are dispersed.

Friday's prayer service outside of Temple Mount

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Just minutes after tens of thousands finished praying inside and outside the Temple Mount this afternoon (Friday), several isolated clashes occurred. As a result of the high tensions, about 3,000 Israel Police officers have been deployed throughout East Jerusalem and the Old City. All entrances to the Temple Mount are open, however, due to the decision to restrict entry to ages 50 and above, there was a mass gathering of those who remained outside praying near the compound gates and the Old City. 

The Israel Police is preparing for the possibility that if mass riots break out in the Temple Mount area, that they will also spread to the eastern neighborhoods in a similar manner to the two Friday prayer services that were held since the Temple Mount terror attack, in which two Israel Border Police officers were murdered.

Thousands pray outside the Temple Mount Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

During the situational assessment meeting held by Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan this afternoon, Erdan stated that “the incitement still exists and there are those who wish in any situation to agitate and ignite the area.” According to him, the Israel Police will use a hard hand against the rioters.

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