Ibraheem Abu Mustafa / Reuter

Deadly protests and clashes continue as UN’s Ban arrives in Jerusalem

Three Palestinians and one Israeli killed as secretary-general prepares to meet with leaders to ease tensions

Five Palestinians and one Israeli were killed, and dozens of other people injured, in violence Tuesday as U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrived in Jerusalem as part of efforts to ease tensions in the region.

Israeli forces shot and killed Ahmad al-Sarhi, 27, as he and other Palestinians protested against Israel’s occupation near the Al-Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza, Ma’an reported. Nine others were injured by live fire.

In northern Gaza, near the Eretz Crossing, Israeli forces wounded eight Palestinian protesters, Ma’an added. Three were shot by live fire, while the others suffered from tear gas inhalation.

The Eretz Crossing, which is a pedestrian and cargo terminal on the border with Israel, was closed following the protest.

Meanwhile, violence continued throughout the West Bank on Tuesday.

Israeli soldiers shot and killed two Palestinian teens — Nidal al-Jabari, 15, and Hussam Ismail Jamil al-Jabari, 17 — in the West Bank city of Hebron, Ma'an News Agency reported. Israel's military said the two were involved in an alleged stabbing attack at a military checkpoint that left one soldier injured.

Earlier, Israeli forces shot and killed a 24-year-old Palestinian man in Beit Awwa, west of Hebron, after he allegedly stabbed an Israeli military officer, lightly wounding him, officials said.

In a separate incident, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian man after he allegedly rammed his car into a group of Israelis in the settlement of Gush Etzion, injuring two people, Haaretz reported.

Hours earlier, an Israeli man was killed after being run over during a clash with Palestinian protesters. The man exited his car after protesters threw stones at it and he began to hit passing Palestinian cars with a large stick, according to an Associated Press photographer who witnessed the incident. The man hit a passing truck with the stick, and the truck ran the man over. The Israeli military confirmed his death.

The Palestinian truck driver turned himself in, saying he hit the Israeli by accident while trying to swerve out of the way, according to a Palestinian security official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media.

Israeli forces wounded dozens of other Palestinians on Tuesday with live fire, rubber-coated steel bullets and tear gas inhalation at protests throughout the West Bank — including in the cities of Bethlehem and Al-Bireh, as well as the village of Nilin.

Ban's visit on Tuesday comes amid a recent surge in violence that broke out in early October after Israel imposed restrictions on worshipers at Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. After the restrictions were implemented, four Israelis were killed in two attacks blamed on Palestinians. Israeli settlers in the West Bank responded by rioting, assaulting Palestinians at random and destroying their property. A spate of protests, clashes and retaliatory stabbings have ensued.

Since the beginning of October, at least 45 Palestinians and nine Israelis have been killed. More than 1,500 Palestinians have also been injured in clashes with Israeli forces, forcing the Red Crescent to declare an emergency.

An Eritrean migrant was also killed after being shot and beaten by an Israeli mob that mistook him for a Palestinian. The Eritrean ambassador to Israel, Tesfamariam Tekeste, told Al Jazeera on Tuesday that he asked the Israeli foreign ministry for a full investigation into the incident in the city of Beersheba after he was notified of it by the Eritrean community.

Palestinian protesters are calling for unrestricted access to worship at Al-Aqsa, a site also revered by Jews as the location of two ancient temples. The protesters also demand an end to Israel’s decades-long military occupation of the Palestinian territories and the cessation of settlement building, both of which are illegal under international law.

In an attempt to ease tensions and avoid prolonged unrest, Ban will meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Ban issued a video message late Monday calling for calm on both sides.

He said he understood the Palestinians' frustrations, but that violence would only harm their aspirations for an independent state.

“I know your hopes for peace have been dashed countless times. You are angry at the continued occupation and expansion of settlements,” he said. “I am not asking you to be passive, but you must put down the weapons of despair.”

Addressing Israelis, Ban said he understood their fears due to the security deterioration, but added there was no military solution to the conflict.

“When children are afraid to go to school, when anyone on the street is a potential victim, security is rightly your immediate priority,” he said. “But walls, checkpoints, harsh responses by the security forces and house demolitions cannot sustain the peace and safety that you need and must have.”

On arrival, Ban attended a press conference in Jerusalem during which he stated: "My visit reflects the sense of global alarm at the dangerous escalation in violence between Israelis and Palestinians," adding: "I am here to encourage and support all efforts to lower tensions and prevent the situation from spinning out of control."

In response to a spate of stabbing attacks in Israel and occupied East Jerusalem, Israel has imposed a series of measures criticized by U.S. officials various and rights groups, including Amnesty International, as “excessive.”

The measures include roadblocks, checkpoints and even the building of walls in Palestinian neighborhoods to separate them from Jewish areas. Israeli police and soldiers have also launched a stop-and-frisk campaign aimed at Palestinian youth. Netanyahu last week announced that Palestinian Jerusalemites guilty of carrying out attacks on Israeli Jews would be stripped of their residency cards and have their family homes demolished.

Palestinians have long accused Israel of trying to rid the city of Arabs, and some have said the current violence could be used as an excuse to further that plan.

The Israeli military on Tuesday demolished the home of a Palestinian man who killed an Israeli woman in 2014. Maher Hashlamoun rammed his car into 25-year-old Dalia Lemkus in the West Bank last year and stabbed her several times before being shot and killed.

His wife told Palestinian radio that soldiers evacuated their three-story building in Hebron and demolished the third floor apartment where her family lived.

ISraeli Defense Force spokesman Peter Lerner said the demolition “sends a clear message that there is a personal price to pay when you are involved in terror.”

However, rights groups have criticized the policy as a form of collective punishment, which is illegal under international law.

Al Jazeera and wire services

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