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Israeli soldiers, Palestinians clash in Jerusalem

By Kevin Flower, CNN
updated 10:49 AM EST, Sat February 25, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The fighting occurred in Jerusalem's al-Ram neighborhood
  • There've been disturbances tied to Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque
  • Palestinian PM Salam Fayyad condemned Ramiyeh's death

Jerusalem (CNN) -- Israeli soldiers and several dozen Palestinians clashed in Jerusalem Saturday, exchanging volleys of rocks, tear gas, fire bombs, and rubber bullets, according to eyewitnesses and the Israeli military.

Hundreds of Palestinians gathered in the northern Jerusalem neighborhood of al-Ram for the burial of 25-year-old Palestinian man, Talat Ramiyeh.

He was shot the day before by Israeli security forces in a protest opposing Israeli police entering the compound that houses Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque, Palestinian officials said.

After the funeral, about 60 Palestinians began throwing rocks and fire bombs at an Israeli military position near the entrance to the neighborhood, an Israeli military spokesman said. The soldiers responded with tear gas and rubber bullets.

There was no immediate word of injuries.

The death of Ramiyeh prompted a condemnation from Palestinian Authority Prime Minster Salam Fayyad. He implored the the international community to hold Israel responsible for what he described as the "concerted use of violence against peaceful protests."

The military spokesman said Ramiyeh's death was still under investigation, but a preliminary report suggested that he had been engaged in a "violent riot" and aimed fireworks at Israeli security personnel who responded with live fire. The investigation suggested that Ramiyeh was hit in the shoulder, the spokesman said.

Saturday's protest marked the latest in a series of disturbances connected to the compound that holds Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque.

During the past week, clashes around the sensitive religious site known the Noble Sanctuary to Muslims and the Temple Mount to Jews erupted on multiple occasions amid rumors that Israeli authorities were allowing right-wing Jewish activists access to the compound in order to stoke tensions with Palestinians.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld denied the reports and said access to the location was being administered under normal guidelines.

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