Palestinian fury boils at funeral for slain youth

2014-07-04 17:49
Palestinian men scuffle with Israeli police at an alleyway leading to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the Old City of Jerusalem. (Ahmad Gharabli, AFP)

Palestinian men scuffle with Israeli police at an alleyway leading to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the Old City of Jerusalem. (Ahmad Gharabli, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Jerusalem - Chanting "Intifada, Intifada", thousands of furious Palestinians called for a new uprising against Israel during the funeral on Friday of a teen they believe was kidnapped and killed by far-right Jews.

Stones thrown at Israeli police were met by teargas, stun grenades and rubber bullets in one of the most highly charged displays of enmity in Jerusalem in years as the body of Mohammed Abu Khudair, 16, wrapped in a Palestinian flag, was carried through his neighbourhood under a sweltering sun.

Medics said 15 demonstrators were treated for injuries. There was no immediate word of arrests by the Israelis.

At another flashpoint, the Gaza Strip border, Palestinian rocket and mortar launches, followed by Israeli artillery shelling, persisted on Friday but no one was hurt.

Palestinian officials trying to calm tensions in recent weeks have said they would prevent any intifada, or uprising, and seek a solution to a crisis that began when three Israeli teens were kidnapped in the occupied West Bank on 12 June.

The discovery of their dead bodies on Monday prompted an outpouring of national grief in Israel. Tensions spiked after Abu Khudair was kidnapped on Wednesday in his Arab neighbourhood in Jerusalem and his charred body was found hours later in a forest on the edge of the city.

Many Palestinians, including President Mahmoud Abbas, assert he was the victim of far-right Jews incensed at the discovery this week of the remains of the three Israeli teenagers.

With Israel having mobilised ground forces outside Gaza on Thursday in a threat to invade, Egypt tried to mediate a truce. Israel and the Islamist Palestinian Hamas movement each said the other had to back down first.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Abu Khudair's killing, a day after the three Jewish seminary students were buried, "loathsome" and ordered a swift police investigation. Israeli authorities said they did not yet know whether the Palestinian was indeed the victim of a hate crime.

Aggravation

The slayings of the young Palestinian and Israelis ramped up mutual aggravation that has festered since Netanyahu quit US-sponsored peace talks in April over Abbas's surprise power-share with rival Hamas Islamists.

Netanyahu accused Hamas militants of seizing the three Israelis and the military mounted a 2-1/2-week-long search in the West Bank and a sweep against the movement's activists and institutions. Hundreds of Palestinians, many of them Hamas members, were detained.

Hamas has neither confirmed nor denied involvement in the West Bank kidnappings. That did not stop some of Abu Khudair's mourners calling for more seizures to pressure Israel into releasing Palestinians in its jails.

"Oh (Hamas) Qassam Brigades, avenge, avenge. Do it again and free prisoners," they crowd chanted, along with cries to rekindle an Intifada, or a revolt, which Palestinians last waged a decade ago.

Tensions were further inflamed by Israeli restrictions on Muslim access to the city's al Aqsa mosque complex during the Ramadan fasting month. Only men 50 or older could enter.

The police presence was already heavy throughout the city this week, to control anti-Arab marches by Israeli ultranationalists and stone-throwing protests by Palestinians.

Existential threat

The Israeli military said it had jailed four soldiers for posting anti-Arab messages on social media. A police spokesperson said the force's cyber-crime unit was also cracking down on racial incitement online, whether by Jewish or Arab citizens.

While vowing to hit Hamas over the three Israeli teenagers' killings, Netanyahu is reluctant to launch a major operation in that could upend already difficult relations with Abbas.

More powerful Israeli attacks in Gaza could also draw longer-range Palestinian rocket fire capable of reaching Israel's heartland and its business capital, Tel Aviv.

Israeli cabinet minister Yuval Steinitz said any escalation risked disrupting international efforts to negotiate a curb on Iran's disputed nuclear drive ahead of a 20 July deadline.

"We don't want, possibly, to divert all of the world's attention to something else now, of all times, from the matter of the Iranian nuclear programme, which is the existential threat to Israel - more than terrorism, more than riots," Steinitz told Israel's Army Radio on Friday.

Read more on:    israel  |  middle east peace  |  gaza
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
21 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Fashion
 

6 life hacks you simply have to know

A few simple tricks can make your life so much easier!

 
 

For chic geeks...

Device lets disabled people talk through their nose
It’s THIS easy for someone to steal your ATM pin!
This is why you should install iOS 8
17 photo illusions that look so real

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at kalahari.com

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at kalahari.com

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may take extra pride in your work today. You have a need to shine and be respected so you may put the extra effort and TLC...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.