‘No foreign body will dictate our way of life in Jerusalem or in the State of Israel,’ police official emphasizes.
By United with Israel staff and JNS
Some 3,200 forces consisting of Israeli police, Border Police and volunteers will secure annual Jerusalem Day events, including the “flag march,” that are to take place this Thursday, Ma’ariv reported.
According to the report, following a situational assessment held by Jerusalem District Police Commander Doron Turgeman, police are on high alert for terror attacks – including missile attacks, though police say there is no “concrete” threat of missiles.
Based on intelligence information and monitoring of social media, 15 suspected of planning to disturb the peace or harm Jerusalem Day events have already reportedly been arrested, while 32 suspects, most resident of eastern Jerusalem, have been detained.
A senior police official told Ma’ariv: “No foreign body will dictate our way of life in Jerusalem or in the State of Israel as a whole.”
“Any attempt to carry out a terror act or disturb the peace will be dealt with immediately.
“Forces are already being deployed starting tonight, and the events will take place as planned, as they have in previous years – including through the Damascus Gate,” the official added, referring to the gate which leads to the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City.
The official also emphasized that marching to the Temple Mount “would not be permitted under any circumstances, and any attempt to disturb the peace will be dealt with heavy-handedly.”
The flag march is an annual highlight of Jerusalem Day festivities, which celebrate the anniversary of the Israeli capital’s liberation during the Six-Day War. Thousands of youths carrying Israeli flags march through Jerusalem’s Old City.
The parade passes through Damascus Gate and proceeds through the Old City to the Western Wall.
Israel’s May 2021 war with Hamas and Islamic Jihad commenced precisely when the flag parade was about to begin, marked by two rockets Hamas fired towards Jerusalem.
Before Jerusalem Day in 2021, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agreed to change the route so that marchers would not pass through the Old City’s Muslim Quarter. Hamas nevertheless fired rockets, sparking an 11-day military operation in Gaza. During that time, Hamas and Islamic Jihad fired 4,400 rockets, killing 13 people inside Israel.
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