Israeli's chant "Death to Arabs" and attack journalists in latest threat to Palestine
Israeli groups chanted "Death to Arabs" and "May your village burn" at peaceful Palestinian onlookers.
Thousands of Israeli nationalists marched through the streets of Jerusalem on Thursday to celebrate the 56th anniversary of 'Jerusalem Day', when Israel captured control of the Old City.
The annual display ratchets tensions in the turbulent region ever year, as Palestinians see the 'celebrations' as a form of provocation.
In the latest act of Israeli aggression towards the Holy Land's Palestinian community, hoards of Israeli's could be heard chanting racist and incendiary slurs towards groups of onlooking Palestinians.
Chants such as "Death to Arabs", "May your village burn" and "Mohammed is dead" were heard ringing out around the Old City.
The groups were made up of primarily young Orthodox Israeli men and teenagers, with the majority of the 'celebrations' taking place outside the Damascus Gate entrance to the Old City of Jerusalem.
This decision was a pointed one by the Israeli's, with Damascus Gate also acting as the entry point to the Muslim quarter of the Old City, and a place known to have a prominent Arab population.
Some of the Israeli youths wore clothing identifying themselves as members of Lehava – a far-right Jewish supremacist group that opposes assimilation or romantic relationships between Jews and Palestinians.
Journalists attacked for covering parade:
With the Damascus Gate area of the city usually theming with people ahead of the weekend period, Arab stores and business either ceased trading for the day or remained largely empty as a result of the parade.
One cohort of people who did remain though were journalists, with many being attacked by projectiles sent from the Israeli crowd.
Israeli police announced that two people had been arrested for throwing water bottles at reporters, however it has been reported that they turned a blind eye to many of the crowds' infractions.
Police themselves could also be witnessed harassing reporters, with CNN's Ben Wedeman being forcibly removed from covering the parade.
Israeli border police physically pushing around @CNN reporter 𝗕𝗲𝗻 𝗪𝗲𝗱𝗲𝗺𝗮𝗻 (@bencnn) as he tries to cover today's Jerusalem Day March by Jewish supremacists. (Go to 0:35 sec) pic.twitter.com/vn5obeQFIt
— Yonatan Touval (@Yonatan_Touval) May 18, 2023
When one parade member was questioned as to whether he was concerned with making the city's Palestinian community uncomfortable, he bluntly responded;
"There is no such thing as a Palestinian people; when was Palestine established? Is there a Palestinian king? Is there a Palestinian currency?"
It has also emerged that authorities in Israel had the option of diverting the parade away from Damascus Gate in order to circumvent Palestinian communities and avoid increased tensions, although they opted against doing so.
For Palestinians, the Jerusalem Day 'celebrations' are seen as the latest move by Israel to incite conflict, following the killing of 15 Palestinians in Israeli airstrikes along the Gaza Strip last week.
- On the ground in Palestine: Living under an Apartheid regime
- Sinn Féin TD speaks on his donning of a Palestinian jersey during Biden address
- Bohemians unveil new kit in aid of Palestinian Charity
- Ireland becomes first EU country to condemn Israel’s “de facto annexation” of Palestine