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VICE News

Footage Shows Israeli Forces Storming Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem

Soldiers reportedly fired rubber bullets inside the mosque’s compound to disperse Palestinians protesting the ground invasion in Gaza.

by Alice Speri
Jul 18 2014, 10:00pm

Photo by James Emery

Israeli forces stormed the compound of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the old city of Jerusalem on Friday in response to a protest by Palestinians opposing the ground invasion launched in Gaza the previous day.

Roughly 100 soldiers reportedly entered the compound, firing rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse a protest that had erupted after Friday prayers. The videos below, shared on social media by locals, show scenes from the mosque's interior and compound.

Israeli authorities had earlier imposed restrictions on worshippers entering the mosque, prohibiting worshippers younger than 50 from praying inside the mosque.

Dozens of people gathered for Friday's prayer outside the mosque. The clashes that followed injured 15 people, the International Business Times reported.

In 2000, while campaigning for the office of Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon visited the mosque's complex accompanied by 1000 police officers, infuriating the Palestinians and precipitating a chain of reactions that culminated in the second intifada.

Follow Alice Speri on Twitter: @alicesperi

Photo via Flickr