100 days since the start of Al-Aqsa Flood Operation…how did it go in Jerusalem
January 14, 2024

100 days for “Al-Aqsa Flood Operation” ... 100 days for the war on the Gaza Strip, and the city of Jerusalem was not far from what was happening in the Strip; a non-stop military attack on Gaza, matched by a number of attacks and violations on the entire city of Jerusalem.

Siege on Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Old City of Jerusalem, suppression of prayers in the streets of the city, killing of Palestinians and withholding of their bodies, “retaliatory” measures against the families of Jerusalemite prisoners and martyrs, daily arrests, an escalation in demolition operations and the displacement of the population, preventing any appearance of welcoming the prisoners liberated in the exchange deal, this picture reflects what the city and its residents have experienced over the past months.

The Wadi Hilweh Information Center - Jerusalem explained that the siege on Al-Aqsa Mosque has been continuing for 100 days, and the siege consists of imposing severe restrictions on Muslims entering it, stationing police officers at its gates and setting up iron barriers over them.

The center added, quoting worshipers, that the police at the gates of Al-Aqsa stop all those coming to the mosque, to check their identities, and during that they are asked some questions, and their bags are searched. The elderly and women are then allowed to enter, while young people continue to be prevented from entering it.

The Information Center pointed out, quoting worshippers, that the ban affects the elderly and women, as the procedures at the gates of Al-Aqsa are subject to the decisions of the policeman stationed at its gate, and the center monitored the prevention of elderly men and women from entering Al-Aqsa.

The Information Center noted that during recent days, the number of worshipers in Al-Aqsa Mosque has increased compared to recent weeks, especially from the people of the Palestinian 1948 lands who have returned to travel to the mosque by buses, and most of them are elderly people and women.

The Information Center explained that the occupation authorities imposed restrictions on the entry of worshipers to Al-Aqsa to perform Friday prayers for 14 consecutive Fridays, and suppressed prayers in the streets of the city with bombs, waste water, beatings, and persecution.

As for the Old City, the police continue to be stationed at its gates and on its roads, especially “Damascus Gate and Al-Wad Street, which leads to several gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque,” and those arriving there, especially young men, are stopped and subjected to inspection.

The forces continue to prevent sitting in the Damascus Gate area.

As for the commercial movement in the Old City, it is almost paralyzed, due to the permanent police presence at the city’s gates and the spread of forces in its roads on the one hand, and due to restrictions on the entry of worshipers to Al-Aqsa “and the dependence of merchants on those arriving there” on the other hand.

As for Al-Rashid Street, since the beginning of last November, the occupation forces have closed its main entrance with iron barriers and its middle with cement cubes. They have placed two observation platforms at the entrance to the police station and placed Israeli flags around it. They prevent vehicles from entering the closed section. As for pedestrians, most are subject to stopping, searches and examination of their identities. The closure of the street hinders patients’ easy access to a medical center located in the middle of the street.

Detaining the bodies of martyrs

The occupation authorities continue to detain the bodies of 8 Jerusalemite martyrs who died during “Al-Aqsa Flood Operation”, they are: Ali Al-Abbasi, Abdel-Rahman Faraj, Khaled Al-Muhtaseb, Adam Abu Al-Hawa, Mohammad Al-Farroukh, Murad Nimer, Ibrahim Nimer, and Ahmed Alayan.

"Retaliatory measures" against the families of prisoners and martyrs

With the beginning of the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation, the occupation authorities launched a campaign against the families of the prisoners and martyrs in Jerusalem. The occupation authorities blew up the homes of: the child prisoner Mohammad Zalbani in the Shu’fat refugee camp, the martyr Khairy Alqam in Silwan, and the two martyrs Ibrahim and Murad Nimer (brothers). They also prevented the family of the martyr Adam Abu Al-Hawa from using its home in Al-Tur, and Mohammad Farroukh's family was also prevented from using their rented house in Issawiya.

During the past months, the occupation authorities carried out raids into the homes of martyrs, prisoners, and those released from prison, and imposed random violations against them. They also issued “demolition notices” to their homes or buildings in which they live, and summons to follow up with the municipality.

During the past months, the occupation authorities confiscated money, gold jewelry, children's piggy banks, toys, vehicles, and motorcycles from liberated prisoners.

Daily arrests

As for the arrests, they did not stop during the 100 days, and affected the elderly, young people, women, and children. Among the detainees were clerics, writers, journalists, freed prisoners, and Jerusalemite activists.

The Information Center explained that the number of detainees in Jerusalem during the past 100 days is more than 1,000 arrests, from various neighborhoods and towns of Jerusalem.

The center pointed out that the checkpoints and barriers that were set up at the entrances to neighborhoods and towns in Jerusalem turned into points of arrest and investigation for hundreds of young men, especially during the first weeks of the war.

The demolition process escalates

As for demolition operations, they escalated during the 100 days, especially of inhabited homes, and the storming of towns and neighborhoods in Jerusalem continued, and demolition decisions were placed on homes, and summons were made to follow up with the municipality.

The center explained that demolitions in Jerusalem during the war period exceeded 75 demolition cases.

Exchange deal

On the 49th day of “Al-Aqsa Flood Operation”, a humanitarian truce began in the Gaza Strip, which lasted for 7 days (until the 55th day of the operation). An “exchange deal” was agreed upon, which completed 7 exchange batches of prisoners between Israel and the Hamas movement, according to which 74 Jerusalemite prisoners were released, including 21 female prisoners and 53 boys aged between 14-18 years.

The occupation authorities imposed restrictions and conditions on the prisoners and their families during and after their release, to prevent any gathering or reception of the prisoner. After the prisoner’s guardian is detained in the detention center, they are released together and taken by the intelligence vehicle to the door of the house.

Summoning the governor of Jerusalem

During Al-Aqsa Flood Operation, members of the occupation intelligence stormed the home of the Governor of Jerusalem, Adnan Ghaith, in Silwan. He was summoned twice for investigation. On the 100th day of the war, Ghaith explained that he received a report from the intelligence “about the possibility of renewing the ban on his entry into the West Bank.”

The governor said in an interview: “What is happening is a series of episodes targeting all Jerusalemites in the occupied capital. Anyone who clings to their inalienable rights, exposes injustice, and rejects persecution will be persecuted by the occupation. I received several decisions from the occupation, including deportation from East Jerusalem and house arrest in the town of Silwan, prohibiting participation in any event, celebration or event in Jerusalem, preventing communication with dozens of Jerusalemite figures and activists, and for the fifth year in a row I was banned from entering the West Bank. Two weeks before the expiration of the last deportation decision, I was informed of the possibility of renewing this decision.”