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12 Feb, 2007 15:10

Palestinians protest against Israeli excavations near Al-Aqsa mosque

Palestinians protest against Israeli excavations near Al-Aqsa mosque

Israeli police and protestors have clashed in the West Bank, as thousands of Palestinians took to the streets to protest against excavations near a Muslim holy shrine in the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.

Israeli troops opened fire and threw stun grenades at a crowd of Palestinian stone throwers.

There have been similar scenes across all the Middle East since an excavation near the Al-Aqsa mosque began last week.

Protestors are concerned that the work to repair a nearby ramp, will damage the foundations of Islam's third holiest shrine.

On its side, Israel said the work is vital and does not endanger the building.