Last night (Friday) clashes erupted between Israel Border Police and Palestinian residents in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan. The soldiers entered the area and positioned themselves on a rooftop of a Palestinian building that they often use for a lookout. According to Palestinian residents, when Border Police entered the house, they assaulted a woman, which resulted in many youths from the neighborhood throwing stones in protest. The soldiers were forced to leave the area, but then large forces of police were sent back later on after realizing that large amounts of ammunition had been left there, which was was taken by Palestinian youths. The police raided homes looking for the missing ammunition, and arrested somewhere between 7-10 residents in the process. More arrests are expected.
It is unclear exactly what kind of ammunition was left, but sources on the ground say it was not just tear gas canisters but also communication devices, which could explain why the police returned in such a frenzy to search for the gear. The entire neighborhood has been put under siege as a result of a mistake made by the IDF. In the past, Israeli activists have filmed soldiers leaving their garbage and urinating on this rooftop.
Israel Border Police entering East Jerusalem during a protest. (Photo: Mairav Zonszein)
Silwan has been the site of many arrests in recent days, including that of Jawad Siyam, who was released on house arrest for seven days, which he is serving at the Wadi Hilwen Information center, where he is the director.
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