Protesters clash in Jerusalem

April 25, 2010 at 8:29 AM
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JERUSALEM, April 25 (UPI) -- Israeli nationalists clashed with Palestinians and police in Jerusalem Sunday as U.S. envoy George Mitchell met with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

Hundreds of police converged on the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan as a police blimp and helicopter hovered overhead, Haaretz reported.

About 50 right-wing protesters demanded demolition of Arab homes and Israeli control of all of Jerusalem while Silwan residents -- with Palestinian flags in their windows -- took to the streets to try to block the protest march.

Itamar Ben Gvir and Baruch Marzel led the right-wing activists on the march from the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City to the center of Silwan, protesting "illegal construction" in the area -- the building of Palestinian homes without city permits.

The Jerusalem Post reported a Silwan resident was arrested and two police officers suffered minor injuries in the East Jerusalem neighborhood.

After the march, locals threw rocks at security forces, injuring the two officers.

Ahead of the right-wing activists' march, Arabs had hurled rocks at cars and Molotov cocktails at the Israeli protesters.

Meanwhile, reported Netanyahu said talks with Mitchell, aimed at revising Mideast peace talks, were "very positive."

At a weekly cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said: "Israel wants to start the peace process immediately. The U.S. wants to start the process immediately, I hope the Palestinians will want to start this process immediately... We will know in the coming days if the process will be launched."

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