(March 9, 2020 / JNS) Almost every day for the past nine months, Israeli Police have raided the Palestinian neighborhood of Issawiya in eastern Jerusalem in a campaign to maintain law and order.
Rights groups say the police search homes and issue fines, as well as detaining hundreds of people on the suspicion of stone-throwing, according to an AP report published on Saturday.
Youths throw rocks and firebombs at police, which it says justifies their heightened presence. The neighborhood, which is located behind the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and only a few miles from the center of the city, would remain part of Israel under the Trump administration’s “Peace to Prosperity” plan and has 20,000 residents.
Palestinians living in eastern Jerusalem have Israeli residency, though most have not applied for citizenship.
During raids last May, a 20-year-old who came very close and launched fireworks at police was shot and killed, according to the report. “From May of last year until today, every day they occupy Issawiya all over again,” said Amin Barakat, an optometrist and a member of the neighborhood council.
Walls in the area are full of graffiti supporting the terrorist group Hamas and other terror groups.
“There’s no use of unnecessary force,” Israeli Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told the AP. “There’s no unnecessary patrols that are taking place. Everything is carefully calculated based on what is taking place inside Issawiya.”
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