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Israeli Court Releases 3 Turks Detained After Protest in Jerusalem

An Israeli court has released three Turkish tourists who were detained by Israeli police earlier on after taking part in a protest following Friday prayers at Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. They were released on bail.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the Turks were arrested after being “involved in an incident in Jerusalem’s Old City after Friday prayers on the Temple Mount”, the Jewish term for the Al-Aqsa mosque compound, without proving details.

The three were likely to face an Israeli court later on Saturday, Rosenfeld said.

A video circulating on social media shows a number of men wearing red shirts with the Turkish flag scuffling with police forces in the Old City.

Turkey’s state-run  Anadolu news agency said two of the three men, who hold dual Turkish and Belgium citizenship, were arrested for “assaulting Israeli police and resisting police”.

The third man was accused of “disturbing public order and taking part in an illegal demonstration”, according to Anadolu.

US President Donald Trump’s December 6 announcement to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move the American embassy there galvanized the Arab and Muslim world.

Eleven Palestinians have since been killed in clashes between protesters and Israeli forces in east Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza.

At the forefront of international condemnation of Trump’s announcement, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed on December 10: “We will not abandon Jerusalem to the mercy of a state that kills children.”

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