Riots erupt in east Jerusalem on Yom Kippur, Silwan man killed in clash with police

Thousands pray at Western Wall without incident; Jerusalem deputy mayor calls for cancellation of all Arab construction in capital, deportation of terrorists’ families.

October 12, 2016 20:52
3 minute read.
BORDER POLICEMEN fire tear gas at rock-throwers in the Shuafat refugee camp

BORDER POLICEMEN fire tear gas at rock-throwers in the Shuafat refugee camp in northeastern Jerusalem on Friday. (photo credit: REUTERS)

A 20-year-old Arab man who threw firebombs at border police during a riot in southeast Jerusalem’s Silwan neighborhood was shot dead shortly after Yom Kippur commenced on Tuesday night, as police responded to two other riots in Arab areas in the capital.

According to police, rioting broke out in Isawiya, Jebl Mukaber and Silwan less than an hour after Judaism’s holiest day began.

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“Arabs living in these neighborhoods threw petrol bombs and rocks at officers who responded to a dangerous and life-threatening situation,” said Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld on Wednesday night.

“One resident in Silwan, who threw a petrol bomb at officers at close range, was injured critically and died. Police attempted to treat him for his injury, but local residents removed his body from the scene and he died a short time later.”

The dead man was identified in Arab media as Silwan resident Ali Atef Ebrahim Shoyoukhi, 20, who was released from prison earlier this year after serving a 15-month sentence.

Shoyoukhi was buried a few hours after later.

Police dispersed the remaining rioters using non-lethal force, Rosenfeld said, adding that no other serious injuries were reported.

Despite the violence in east Jerusalem, Rosenfeld said thousands of Jews prayed at the Western Wall in the Old City without incident.

Over 3,500 officers from multiple units have been canvassing the capital during the High Holy Days, Rosenfeld said.

Also on Tuesday night, Palestinians fired at soldiers near the West Bank security barrier in the vicinity of the village of Ni’lin. Soldiers who were dispatched to the area by an army lookout returned fire and the suspects fled, the IDF said.

Units from the Efraim Territorial Brigade conducted searches in the area and arrested a number of suspects following the exchange of fire.

The closure imposed by the IDF on the West Bank was gradually lifted after the end of the holiday on Wednesday night.

In the Upper Galilee over the holiday, shots were fired at three houses of the same family in Beit Jann, with no injuries reported. While in Deir el-Asad, near Karmiel, the house of a 30-year-old local was damaged from gunfire, with no injuries reported. In both cases the background is unknown and police are conducting an investigation.

Another shooting occurred in the Beduin village of Shakib al-Salam, southeast of Beersheba, where a man was wounded and treated in fair condition at the city’s Soroka-University Medical Center.

Meanwhile, two days after a terrorist shot and killed police Special Patrol Adv.-St.-Sgt.-Maj. Yosef Kirma, 29, and Levana Malichi, 60, a former Knesset employee, and wounded six others in a driveby attack in the capital on Sunday, Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Meir Turgeman called for a complete shutdown of all Arab construction in the city.

During an interview with Israel Radio, Turgeman, who aso chairs the municipality’s Planning and Building Committee, also demanded that all terrorists’ families be deported to the Gaza Strip.

“We have reached the moment of truth,” he said. “Let’s put all the cards on the table: The people in eastern Jerusalem want to kill us and destroy us. Why should we give them yet another opportunity? “We lived under the false hopes that these people would change their animal-like behavior if we help them, but it turns out that nothing helps. Why do people have to die in Jerusalem? Where is that written? Who said it? “We need to take responsibility here,” Turgeman continued. “And I’m going to set an example. I removed all construction plans in eastern Jerusalem from the agenda – I canceled all the plans. They say stick and carrot, but there are no more carrots, only sticks.”

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat issued a statement soon after Turgeman’s interview saying the deputy mayor did not consult with him before speaking, and that the municipality would not enforce his proposed policy.

“[Turgeman’s] comments do not reflect the opinion of the mayor, or the policy of the municipality,” the statement said. “The way to prevent terrorism is to fight without compromise, and with a heavy hand against those who choose the way of terrorism, incitement and violence – and simultaneously strengthen the moderates and serve residents who wish to act in accordance with the law.”

Rosenfeld said heightened security will remain in effect throughout the capital.

Eliyahu Kamisher and Yaakov Lappin contributed to this report.

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