VIDEOS/PHOTOS: Brawl on Har Habyis After Palestinians Refuse Entry to Israeli Officer Wearing Kippah

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Scuffles broke out at the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem’s Old City on Monday after guards at the mosque refused to allow an Israeli policeman to enter for a routine security check because he was wearing a Jewish skullcap known as a kippah, a Palestinian official said.

Firas Dibs, a spokesman for the Islamic authority that oversees the site, says dozens of worshippers scuffled with police after the guards closed the doors to the mosque and barricaded themselves inside. He says the director of the mosque was lightly wounded.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said police “prevented any disturbances from taking place” after local residents closed the doors of the mosque and prevented officers from entering. He said the doors were opened a few hours later and that police detained five people for questioning.

Dibs said police carry out routine security checks every morning, and that the policeman was only prevented from entering because he was wearing a kippah. The Palestinians have long feared that Israel plans to take over the site so it can rebuild the Temple, allegations denied by the Israeli government, which says it has no plans to change the status quo.

(AP)




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