As many Israelis march around the Old City, Palestinians are threatening to respond with violence; Hamas issues a warning that it is prepared to engage in conflict.
On Wednesday, numerous Israelis visited the Western Wall for the second portion of the priestly blessing ‘Birkat Hakohanim,’ which takes place annually on two occasions – Pesach (Passover) and Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles). This year, the blessing was divided into two segments (Monday & Wednesday) for crowd control and security purposes, as thousands of Israelis typically show up.
Adding to the event at the Western Wall, Israelis also prepared to march around the Old City with flags.
Due to ongoing threats of violence from the Gaza-based, Iranian-funded terror proxy, Hamas, the Israeli Police sought to prevent the march, at least in several areas citing security concerns. However, a host of Israelis showed up despite not having approval for the march. While many partook in the march, police prevented them from entering through the Damascus Gate in the Muslim Quarter.
The Palestinians incited clashes with Israeli Security Forces (ISF) approaching Passover weekend last week. The ISF quickly confronted those instigating violence from the Temple Mount, arresting several offenders. Countless rocks were hurled at Israelis in the area of the Western Wall throughout the conflict.
As expected, Hamas warned that it had its “finger on the trigger” concerning any escalation from the Israelis in the Old City on Wednesday.
In May of last year, Hamas fired approximately 4,800 rockets at Israel in response to minor conflicts pertaining to the Old City, most of which were intercepted by the Iron Dome. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) responded to the aggression from Hamas last year with significant force via airstrikes, resulting in multiple injuries and several casualties.