Palestinian Red Crescent says 42 people were wounded after police fired teargas and rubber-tipped bullets
The Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said 42 people were wounded in the Israeli assault as police used rubber-tipped bullets, teargas and stun grenades to disperse crowds. At least 22 people had been taken to hospital with injuries reported in the upper body.
Medics were also prevented from entering the mosque to provide first aid to the wounded and one paramedic was beaten by Israeli forces, the PRCS added.
The raid started around 6:30am local time, shortly after worshippers staged a pro-Palestine demonstration in the courtyard of al-Aqsa following dawn prayer, a near-daily tradition in Ramadan this year.
Around 70,000 people performed night prayer on Thursday night, with many remaining overnight to observe the final days of the holy month in the mosque.
The storming lasted for nearly an hour, in which Israeli forces tried to empty the mosque’s courtyard and make arrests. Meanwhile, young Palestinians barricaded themselves near the Qibli prayer hall in the southern section of the mosque, and threw rocks and firework at police to stop their advance.
Israeli police said three people had been arrested, two for throwing stones and one for incitement. It added the raid started after stones were thrown towards the Mughrabi Gate where a police station is located. One stone landed in the adjacent Western Wall plaza, police said.
Hundreds of Palestinians have been wounded and arrested during multiple Israeli raids through Ramadan.
Palestinians have been outraged by repeated intrusions by Israeli settlers to pray at the site, the third-holiest in Islam and the holiest in Judaism.
By long-standing convention, non-Muslim tourists are allowed to visit under certain conditions and the approval of the Waqf, an Islamic trust that manages the affairs of the mosque, but only Muslims are allowed to pray there.
Middle East Eye