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Holy City Divided on Jerusalem Day

The annual march of nationalist Israelis through east Jerusalem on Jerusalem Day on May 8 contributes to divisions and resentment in the Holy City, reports Jillian Kestler-D’Amours.
Palestinian protesters wave Palestinian flags as Israelis carrying Israeli flags walk past in front of the Damascus Gate outside Jerusalem's Old City during a parade marking Jerusalem Day May 8, 2013. Jerusalem Day marks the anniversary of Israel's capture of the Eastern part of the city during the 1967 Middle East War. In 1980, Israel's parliament passed a law declaring united Jerusalem as the national capital, a move never recognised internationally. There were confrontations on Wednesday between Muslims

OLD CITY, EAST JERUSALEM — Jihad Hammad sat on a white, plastic chair outside his father’s antiques shop in Jerusalem’s Old City. To his left, four Israeli police officers manned metal barricades blocking the street. To his right, another checkpoint restricted movement even more a few meters down the road.

“They told us to close, but we stayed open. Why should we close? In every area there is a checkpoint. All the areas are closed. But we never close [the shop],” the 19-year-old told Al-Monitor, as groups of right-wing Israelis moved seamlessly through the two roadblocks and in front of the shop.

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