Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Jordan calls for emergency UN Security council meeting as pressure rises in Jerusalem


By Editor - October 28, 2014
TAGS:
Section: [Main News] [Life under Occupation]
Tags: [Jerusalem] [Jerusalem municipality] [UN] [Mahmoud Abbas] [al-Aqsa] [Al-Issawiyyeh] [Silwan]

A spokesperson for Jordan’s mission to the United Nations confirmed Monday that his country will ask the UN Security Council to hold an emergency meeting on behalf of the Palestinians, who have written the council president regarding the “dangerously escalating tensions” in East Jerusalem. 
 
Earlier on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pushed forward plans for 1,060 new housing units in East Jerusalem settlements despite growing international criticism and steadily rising violence between Palestinians and Jews in the city.
 
Both the U.S. and the European Union condemned Netanyahu’s move. State Department Spokesperson Jen Psake said Washington was “deeply concerned” by reports of Netanyahu’s plans. 
 
Shortly after Netanyahu’s announcement on Monday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said the Palestinian Authority (PA) would appeal to the UN Security Council to call on Israel to stop its ongoing expansion of settlements in the city, its increasing campaign collective punishment throughout Palestinian neighborhoods as well as its attempts to change the status quo of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. 
 
Adding to the chaotic day, Palestine Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah paid a rare visit to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, commenting, “There will not be a Palestinian state without East Jerusalem as its capital.”
 
Hamdallah’s appearance at Al-Aqsa was followed up Tuesday morning by a provocative visit from the Jewish mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barak, accompanied by a large group of armed police officers. 
 
“Barakat is the first mayor to storm Al-Aqsa, joining the extremist groups and the extremist Knesset members who usually storm the place and urge others to do the same,” said the director of the Al-Aqsa Mosque Sheikh Omar al-Kiwsani. . 
 
Crack down on Palestinian Neighborhoods
 
The Israeli police have been heavily cracking down on Palestinian neighborhoods throughout East Jerusalem since last week, when a young man from Silwan was shot and killed after he ran over a group of people waiting at an East Jerusalem light rail station, killing a three-month-old baby and a 22-year-old Ecuadorian woman. Israeli officials labeled the incident a terrorist attack while the young man’s family argues he lost control of the vehicle.   
 
Since then, the situation has steadily declined. Daily clashes between Palestinian youth and heavily armed Israeli security forces have occurred on a daily basis in almost every Palestinian neighborhood in the city. 
 
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warned the U.S. on Sunday of the steadily deteriorating situation in Jerusalem, saying it was liable to spin out of control if the Israeli government continues its current provocative policies, particularly attempts to change the status quo in the Temple Mount area. 
 
Residents of East Jerusalem say police are using crowd-dispersal methods indiscriminately in attempt to collectively punish the city’s Palestinian population, the Israeli English-language daily Haaretz reported on Tuesday. 
 
Residents of Silwan and Issawiya said Israel’s security forces have hit houses in the neighborhoods indiscriminately during clashes with youth, shooting tear gas into windows and spraying 'Skunk Water” into homes at random. 
 
Adal Siam, a resident of Silwan, said his house was targeted by the fowl-smelling liquid for no reason.  
 
“We were sleeping. It was a quarter to 12 at night and the machine stood in front of our shouse and deliberately fired at our windows. The windows break from the pressure and the whole house gets filled with it, “Siam said. 
 
“For the first time ever I vomited for 20 minutes, even though I had nothing in my stomach. We’ve washed everything down three times but the smell doesn’t go away. My poor wife, children and mother can’t breathe.”
 
Police have closed the two main entrances to Issawiya, a small, overcrowded neighborhood that sits in a valley below Hebrew University. 
 
“This makes no sense,” Issawiya’s village leader Darwish Darwish told Haaretz. “They’re just heating things up. Instead of calming things down, they’re lighting fires.” 
 
Border and traffic police have erected flying checkpoints in around Silwan and Issawiya over the past few days, often writing tickets for minor infractions. Residents say this too is a form of collective punishment. 
 
 
 
 

 

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