Friday, 26 June 2015

Israel prevents hundreds of Gazans from entering Jerusalem


Hundreds of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip were prevented from reaching Jerusalem to pray in the Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday.

Israeli authorities revoked this week’s permits for Gazans to visit the holy site after a rocket fired from the territory hit an open area near the town of Ashkelon in the western Negev early Wednesday, sources at the Palestinian liaison told Ma'an.

Israeli official Yoav Mordechai told Ma'an at the time that the 500 men and women scheduled to leave Gaza would not be allowed to travel because “the security conditions around the crossing aren’t stable," adding that the recent rocket fire landed “not far from the Erez crossing" on the Gaza-Israel border.

While Israel initially eased travel restrictions for Palestinians during the holy month of Ramadan, authorities said such increases in movement came on the condition that security wasn't "breached."

Mordechai said Wednesday that Israeli authorities would reevaluate the security conditions next week in order to determine future travel by Gazans into Jerusalem, adding that he held Hamas "responsible for depriving worshipers of prayer in Al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan," acknowledging that while the group was not responsible for firing the rocket, they are responsible for controlling the Gaza Strip. more

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