Controversial Israeli ‘Flag March’ through Jerusalem gets green light from security council

Israel’s top-level security council has signed off on the Flag March planned by right-wing groups through Jerusalem’s Old City, just a day after organizers canceled the event due to a dispute with police over the route.

Ministers on the council voted on Tuesday to back the event, which is held annually on Jerusalem Day to mark the city’s return to Israeli control in 1967 after 19 years of Jordanian rule. 

The security council said the march can go ahead on June 15, if the route is approved by police.

A compromise on the march had been reached by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, who put forward a new proposal for it to take place, the council said in a statement.

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On Monday, those behind the march said they had chosen to cancel the event after police announced they would refuse to let it pass through the Old City’s Muslim Quarter amid concerns it could spark fresh clashes between Israelis and Palestinians.

The event had initially been set to take place on May 10, but was axed amid security fears as tensions erupted over the evictions of Palestinian families in East Jerusalem, with militant group Hamas firing a barrage of rockets from Gaza toward Israel, and the Israel Defense Forces carrying out airstrikes on Gaza.

A ceasefire was agreed after 11 days of fighting, during which over 250 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed.

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