The Israeli High Court in Jerusalem on Sunday has rejected a petition that demanded that the Zionist “Jerusalem Day” march which celebrates the 1967 Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza be barred from the Muslim Quarter in the old city of Jerusalem.
The annual march, which will be held by Zionist religious youth, this year coincides with the beginning of Ramadan, a holy month for Muslims, which will be confirmed by Saudi Arabia at around 7:43.
Last year’s march has seen violent clashes, where “racist insults were hurled by marchers at Arabs, as well as cases of vandalism.”
According to Haaretz, the court on Sunday approved an agreement between the state and the parade’s organizers that the march would start 15 minutes earlier so that “no Jewish marchers will be present at the Muslim Quarter if Ramadan begins Sunday.”
Haaretz also reported that the court’s ruling says that that the last of the marchers will be allowed to enter the Muslim Quarter through Damascus Gate at 6:15 P.M., adding that by 7 P.M. the Quarter’s main street will be clear. The judges ordered police to make sure there will be “minimal friction with the Muslim residents” and reiterated an instruction from last year to show “zero tolerance to verbal and physical violence.”
On Thursday, an urgent petition was filed with the High Court by the Ir Amim non-profit group and Amir Cheshin, a former Arab affairs adviser to Jerusalem’s mayor. The petitioners demanded that the court instruct the police to bar the march from the Muslim Quarter.
The Israeli “Jerusalem Day” holiday commemorates the day when Israel took hold of the West Bank and Gaza following the Six Day War in 1967.