Olmert says works near al Aqsa to continue
Israel on Sunday resumed controversial renovations near Jerusalem's al Aqsa Mosque, as 2,000 policemen were out on the streets braced for a third straight day of violent demonstrations.
A few dozen protestors scuffled with police outside the Old City's Dung Gate Sunday. Despite the street protests, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert refused to call off the renovations.
"Work will continue because it is a question of fixing a dangerous situation," he said at his weekly cabinet meeting, according to AFP. "The building site is not on the mosque compound and does not offend the sensitivities of Muslims."
Access to the compound -- known as Haram al-Sharif -- remained off limits to Muslim men under 45 and all Palestinians from the West Bank, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Checkpoints around Jerusalem remained in place to prevent Palestinians from the West Bank sneaking into the city to fuel the protests, he added.