Three Police Officers Hurt in Jerusalem Arab Riot

Three policemen were hurt Saturday night when trying to control an Arab riot in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Shuafat.

Chana Ya'ar ,

Arabs rioting / archive
Arabs rioting / archive
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Three police officers were wounded Saturday night while trying to control an Arab riot in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Shuafat. They were treated on the scene.

The Arab residents of the neighborhood, who maintain residency in the Palestinian Authority, were protesting construction of a pedestrian walkway at the Shuafat security checkpoint.

A PA source told the Hebrew language daily newspaper Yediot Acharonot that local residents' lives would be "miserable" due to the walkway. "This is one step before declaring that we are no longer recognized as residents of Jerusalem," he said.

Others who support the construction of the walkway said it would facilitate movement at the checkpoint and ease travel to the city from Shuafat.

Shuafat has been a hotspot at which Arab youths have been hurling rocks at the new light rail as it travels through the community on its way around the capital. A windshield was broken about two months ago, frightening passengers but causing no physical injuries.

In Saturday's riot, Arabs wore hoods, possibly to avoid identification, and hurled rocks and firebombs (Molotov cocktails) at the security forces.

Police responded with crowd dispersal methods, which included firing rubber bullets at the mob.

At least one Arab was arrested. PA sources claimed that two Arabs were injured in the melee.

A similar riot took place on Thursday, during which eight Arabs were arrested.