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October 18, 2015

East Jerusalem is Closed

Violence continued throughout Israel, East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza this week. In Jerusalem the Israeli security cabinet approved the revocation of Jerusalem residency status for Palestinians who carry out attacks and have authorized Israeli police “to impose a closure on, or to surround, centers of friction and incitement in Jerusalem, in accordance with security considerations.” Throughout the rest of Israel, military units are being used to support police in Israeli cities, on major roads and public transportation.

In the West Bank and Gaza hundreds of Palestinians were injured in clashes last week with Israeli soldiers during demonstrations and dozens more were injured while attempting to harvest their olives after being confronted by rock throwing Israeli settlers.

Despite condemnation of all violence by the United States, European Union and United Nations both Israeli and Palestinian government leaders continued to blame each other this week.

United States Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that he “is not going to point fingers” at who is responsible for the current violence. Later that same day he told a Harvard University audience that “there's been a massive increase in settlements over the course of the last years, and now you have this violence because there's a frustration that is growing."

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