Israel not budging on mosque metal detectors

Three Israelis stabbed to death in West Bank attack — BBCI

Amid a mounting toll of deaths and injuries in the crisis, Israelis and Palestinians are braced for weeks of confrontation, as both sides appeared to dig in to their positions.

Israel installed the detectors after two Israeli policemen were killed near there earlier this month.

Israeli forces blocked access to the village of Khobar in the West Bank, home to the 19-year-old Palestinian assailant, who was identified as Omar Al-Abed.

Israel's security Cabinet met Sunday to review a decision to install metal detectors at a contested Jerusalem holy site, following a week of escalating tensions with the Muslim world, mass prayer protests and Israeli-Palestinian violence.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas announced on Friday a freeze of all contacts with Israel over violence in Jerusalem.

Israel says the three Israeli Arabs involved in the 14 July shooting near the compound were able to smuggle guns inside and that the new security measures are needed to stop similar attacks. Police said they were investigating the charge.

After nightfall, a Palestinian sneaked into a home in the Israeli settlement of Halamish in the West Bank and stabbed to death three Israelis.

Tensions in Jerusalem's Old City boiled over into skirmishes after the midday prayer.

Israeli security forces said they had arrested 25 men active in Hamas.

"It is astonishing that [the Department of ] State is parroting the false Palestinian narrative", said B'nai B'rith in its statement.

The clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces erupted after the latter had chose to install metal detectors at the entrances of Haram al-Sharif, also known as Temple Mount, in the Old City.

"The only thing we want is to ensure no one can enter with weapons again and carry out another attack", he said.

Israeli officials argue that the detectors are needed for security after the gun attack outside the mosque.

Gilad Erdan, Israel's public security minister, warned of potential "large-scale volatility" - a prospect made more likely in the West Bank by the absence of Abbas's help.

"They (metal detectors) will remain...."

Israel will not remove metal detectors whose installation outside a major Jerusalem mosque has triggered the bloodiest confrontations with the Palestinians in years, but could eventually reduce their use.

Since then, four Palestinians have been killed and hundreds more injured in clashes that began in East Jerusalem on Friday between Israeli security forces and Palestinians protesting the measure.

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