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Police Battle Palestinians in Jerusalem : Gas Reaches Mosque; Demonstrators Burn U.S., Israeli Flags

January 15, 1988|Times Wire Services

JERUSALEM — Israeli police battled stone-throwing Palestinian protesters on Jerusalem's Temple Mount today, injuring at least 70, while the army killed another Arab in Israeli-occupied Gaza City.

Tear gas wafted into Al Aqsa Mosque, one of Islam's holiest shrines, and demonstrators outside burned Israeli and U.S. flags and beat a plainclothes policeman unconscious after grabbing his pistol when he tried to fire warning shots.

Police, clad in riot gear and with clubs flailing, charged into about 300 Palestinian protesters who chanted Islamic slogans after prayers in the Haram a Sharif (Noble Sanctuary).

A doctor at the Mokassed Islamic Hospital said about 70 casualties were treated there, including two dozen men who had been clubbed in the rioting and dozens suffering the effects of tear gas. Several policemen limped away from the clash wounded.

8 Protesters Arrested

Police said they arrested eight protesters.

An army spokeswoman said Ibrahim Mahmoud Abu Nahel, 31, was shot dead in Gaza's Sheik Radwan district when he stabbed a soldier in the leg after barring a doorway to troops chasing a youth who threw stones at an army patrol.

"An officer opened fire in accordance with regulations and killed the attacker," she said.

The man's family disputed the army account and said he was killed in a clash with club-wielding soldiers who tried to force him off the roof of his house.

Death Toll at Least 36

The fatality brought to at least 36 the Palestinian death toll in nearly six weeks of anti-Israeli unrest in the occupied territories, according to U.N. figures. At least 200 Palestinians have been wounded.

Elsewhere, the army said, it shot and wounded two Palestinians in the West Bank village of Salfit, south of Nablus, after dozens of masked youths attacked a police station with stones, bottles and metal projectiles.

Thirteen Palestinian refugee camps, including all eight in the Gaza Strip, were under curfew today as the army deployed a massive presence in a bid to snuff out unrest.

The Israeli measures have made it impossible for journalists to assess Palestinian reports of shortages of food and water in some of the refugee camps.

Sit-In by Deportees

Meanwhile, four Palestinians deported by Israel began a sit-in today at a Red Cross center in Syrian-controlled eastern Lebanon, demanding that they be allowed to return to the occupied West Bank.

"We shall continue our struggle until we return to our homeland," said one of the deportees, Jabril Mahmoud Rajub.

He said they would remain at the International Committee of the Red Cross center in Ksara, 55 miles north of Israel, "until we return to Palestine, even as corpses to be buried there."

About 100 Palestinian men, women and children demonstrated outside the four-story Red Cross building, waving placards and chanting, "Glory to our people's uprising in occupied lands!" Loudspeaker vans blared patriotic Palestinian songs.

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