US National Security Advisor: US 'seriously concerned' about Jerusalem violence

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan speaks to Israeli counterpart, says US will remain fully engaged to promote calm in Jerusalem.

Elad Benari ,

Gilad Erdan, Jake Sullivan and Meir Ben-Shabbat
Gilad Erdan, Jake Sullivan and Meir Ben-Shabbat
Israeli Embassy in Washington

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan spoke by phone on Sunday with Israeli National Security Advisor Meir Ben-Shabbat and discussed with him the ongoing unrest in Jerusalem.

A statement from the White House said Sullivan expressed “the United States’ serious concerns about the situation in Jerusalem, including violent confrontations at the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount during the last days of Ramadan.”

Sullivan highlighted recent engagements by senior US officials with senior Israeli and Palestinian Arab officials and key regional stakeholders to press for steps to ensure calm, deescalate tensions, and denounce violence, the statement added.

“Sullivan also reiterated the United States’ serious concerns about the potential evictions of Palestinian families from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood. They agreed that the launching of rocket attacks and incendiary balloons from Gaza towards Israel is unacceptable and must be condemned,” it added.

The statement also said that Sullivan “encouraged the Israeli government to pursue appropriate measures to ensure calm during Jerusalem Day commemorations.”

“Mr. Sullivan expressed the administration’s commitment to Israel’s security and to supporting peace and stability throughout the Middle East, and assured Mr. Ben-Shabbat that the US will remain fully engaged in the days ahead to promote calm in Jerusalem,” concluded the statement.

The violence in Jerusalem continued on Sunday night, with a large number of Arabs rioting on Mount Scopus, near the Hebrew University campus.

Several Jews who were passing by are reported injured. Three sustained head injuries from stones thrown at them, and were evacuated to Shaare Zedek Hospital in the capital. Another three were targeted with pepper spray and were treated at the site.

Several others were physically attacked, including three police officers who arrived at the scene and used stun grenades to disperse the rioters. The injured police officers were also evacuated for medical treatment.

On Saturday night, the Middle East Quartet, of which the US is a member, urged Israel to “exercise restraint” amid the ongoing violent clashes between security forces and Arabs in Jerusalem.

“The Envoys of the Middle East Quartet from the European Union, Russia, the United States, and the United Nations are closely monitoring the situation in East Jerusalem, including in the Old City and Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood,” said a statement published by the Quartet.

“The Envoys express deep concern over the daily clashes and violence in East Jerusalem, in particular last night’s confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount.”



top