Alexander Levlovich was leaving a dinner celebration for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. The Palestinian attackers threw rocks at Levlocivh’s car traveling on a road between a Palestinian and Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem. This caused him to lose control of the vehicle and crash into a pole, which killed him.
Prime Minister Netanyahu announced he would call for a special meeting on Tuesday, to discuss the “punishments and strict enforcement” to combat rock throwing. Last week, Israeli police concluded the stone throwing incidents has increased 53 percent in 2014 from that of the previous year.
Violence also erupted on the Temple Mount over the holiday following a decision to deploy additional Israeli police to guard against possible attacks, due to the large amount of visitors expected on the temple mount and in the Old City during the holiday.
Monday Jerusalem District Police Chief Moshe Edri and his forces were deployed to the Temple Mount to ensure the safety of Jewish citizens over the holiday. Upon entering they were pelted with rocks and other objects from rioters running in the direction of Al-Aqsa Mosque. The rioters were forced inside the mosque and the doors were shut in order to prevent them from harming others. The Jordanian government condemned Israel for what they termed as “storming” of a Muslim holy site in Jerusalem’s Old City.
Following this incident around 500 people visited the Temple Mount Monday morning to celebrate Rosh Hashanah. Another incident occurred in the Old City when two Muslims attacked a Jewish boy. Israeli police forces arrested the two suspects and the victim was treated at the scene.
After meeting with Israeli security officials Netanyahu announced that the government would be “changing policy”, calling the current situation “unacceptable.”
“We are also going to adopt changes in the rules of engagement and minimum sentences on those who throw stones and firebombs,” Netanyahu said.
In Jerusalem, especially on the Temple Mount, tension between Palestinians and Israelis is nothing new, and has frequently been the launching point for wider conflict, including both the first and second intifadas, explaining both Israeli government’s insistence on maintaining the status quo regarding the Temple Mount’s administrative status, and the desire by Palestinian agitators to foment additional unrest there.
- U.S. ‘Targeting Force’ Deployed to Combat the Islamic State - December 7, 2015
- Additional Attacks in France and Israel Raise Concern - November 20, 2015
- Al-Shabab Claims Hotel Attack in Mogadishu - November 3, 2015