Barkat: Ensure Jerusalem violence 'won't boast any achievements'

Barkat does not believe

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat said on Tuesday that he did not believe the clashes in the eastern suburbs of the city would turn into a full-fledged conflict. Barkat asserted that Arab violence in the holy city was "not in the best interests of Israel or the Palestinians." The mayor spoke at a rally during the colorful Jerusalem March, thanking 70,000 spectators and hundreds of policemen and telling them to "put provocations aside." He added that any disquiet in the suburbs of Jerusalem would be dealt with on a local level. "The entire Muslim population [of Jerusalem] was able to observe Ramadan in peace last month," said Barkat. "Now the Muslims must allow the Jews to celebrate their own holidays," he concluded, echoing sentiments expressed on Monday by Jerusalem police chief Cmdr. Aharon Franco.