Timeline: Deadly Gaza and Jerusalem Clashes

·3-min read

This is a recap of the last few bloody days of violence between Israel and Palestinians, sparked by a years-long bid by Jewish settlers to take over Arab homes in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem.

Bloody end to Ramadan

Clashes erupt on Friday as Muslims pack the Al-Aqsa mosque compound — Islam’s third holiest site — to pray on the last Friday of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

Violence had been building in the Holy City and occupied West Bank for the previous week.

Palestinians hurl stones, bottles and fireworks at police who fire rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades. The site is also sacred to Jews as the location of two biblical-era temples.

More than 220 people, mostly Palestinians, are wounded.

Second night

On Saturday violence flares elsewhere in east Jerusalem.

Some 121 Palestinians are wounded overnight, the Palestinian Red Crescent says, while 17 Israeli police officers are hurt.

The Middle East Quartet — the US, Russia, EU and the UN — express “deep concern” over the violence.

Court case delay

Much of the recent unrest stems from the long-running legal effort by Jewish settler groups to evict several Palestinian families from their homes, in the east Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah.

A lower court ruling earlier this year backing the settlers’ decades-old claim infuriated Palestinians.

But a Supreme Court hearing on a Palestinian appeal is postponed by the justice ministry in light of “the circumstances”.

Third night

As Pope Francis joins calls for an end to the violence, Palestinians and Israeli police face off again overnight Saturday and on Sunday evening in east Jerusalem.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defends Israel’s response to the protests.

March cancelled

In fierce clashes on Monday morning at the mosque compound, the Palestinian Red Crescent says at least 395 Palestinians are wounded, with more than 200 hospitalised.

Fears of further chaos eases temporarily when the planned “Jerusalem Day” march to celebrate the Jewish state’s 1967 capture of the Old City is cancelled.

Dramatic escalation

But Hamas then threatens to up the ante, unless Israel pulls its security forces out of the compound.

Militants in Gaza fire more than 200 rockets towards Israel.

Israel responds with 130 strikes by fighter jets and attack helicopters on “military targets” in the Hamas-run enclave.

Twenty-eight Palestinians — including 10 children — are killed in the exchange of fire.

Islamic Jihad said two of its commanders were among those killed.

Israel said two people were killed Tuesday in an intense rocket bombardment of the coastal town of Ashkelon north of Gaza, with Netanyahu vowing to intensify attacks in reply.

1,050 rockets in 60 hours

In the north of the occupied West Bank a Palestinian is killed and another wounded by Israeli army gunfire.

In the evening, a 12-storey building in Gaza where several top Hamas commanders had offices is completely destroyed in an Israeli air strike.

In retaliation, Hamas says it has launched 130 rockets towards Tel Aviv, where air raid sirens ring out.

Ben Gurion airport near Tel Aviv halts flights.

With 35 Palestinians and five Israelis now killed since Monday, Israel says Wednesday that it has been the target of some 1,050 rocket attacks over the last 60 hours.

It said 850 have either landed in Israel or been intercepted by its Iron Dome air defence system, while 200 fell short coming down in Gaza.

Read all the Latest News, Breaking News and Coronavirus News here