Israeli police used stun grenades to disperse a crowd of Palestinian protesters who clashed with authorities for the fourth day running following the introduction of new security measures at Jerusalem's sacred Temple Mount or Noble Sanctuary as referred to by Muslims.
The White House is urging Israel and Jordan to help reduce tension on the Temple Mount, the center of a dispute with Palestinians over access to a religious site in annexed east Jerusalem.
The Hamas and Islamic Jihad movements have also called for protests in the West Bank and Gaza Strip over the new security measures, which include metal detectors and turnstiles at the entrance to the site.
There are divisions among the Israelis, with the police and Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan in favor of leaving the metal detectors in place, while the Shin Bet and the IDF favor removing them, fearing widespread unrest if they remain.
Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority, condemned the attack in a telephone conversation he initiated with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. This drew a new wave of protests and criticism, with Turkish government going as far as describing the measures as "a crime against humanity, a crime committed against the freedom of religion". A day earlier, minor scuffles broke out as some Muslim worshippers tried to stop others from using the gates, Israeli media reported. "While the families [of the killed officers] are still sitting and mourning, we can't let this just pass", he said.More news: Hillary Clinton Is Less Popular Than Trump
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Officials from the Waqf that administers the Temple Mount site have staged protests against the metal detectors, gathering groups to pray outside the entrance to the site rather than enter the compound.
Police were preparing for the eventuality that the security officials will decided that the metal detectors remain in place, Channel 2 reported. Palestinians say the attacks stem from anger over decades of Israeli occupation of territories they claim for their future state. Proposals to change security measures at the compound have sparked controversy in the past. The bishops said they mourned for those killed and deplored "the heightened tensions that such an attack can span".
Jews revere the site, where the two Jewish temples stood in biblical times, as the Temple Mount.
Israel sealed off the site in the aftermath of the attack, saying the closure was necessary to carry out security checks.