|Israeli killed at start of Ramadan|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Friday, 29 September 2006 00:00|
Police have stepped up security at the Temple Mount this morning as the Islamic holy month of Ramadan commences. Israeli police are restricting entry to the site as thousands of Muslims attend Friday prayers at the mosque.
Quote: ""The Jerusalem police are deployed in the Temple Mount area and the neighborhoods to enforce law and security in the east of the city and the Old City. We have no concrete intelligence about intentions to disturb the order during prayers or specific intentions to carry out an attack in the capital," Jerusalem police chief Maj.-Gen. Ilan Franko told Ynet.
There have been fears Islamic terror groups would mount attacks during the period, as this year the Islamic month of Ramadan coincides with Rosh Hashanah - the Jewish New Year, and it seems those fears have been justified. Earlier today two Palestinian gunmen were killed in an Israeli air strike as they returned to collect a rocket launcher that has been used to fire Kassam rockets into Israel. One man has also been killed and five wounded, as a car bomb was detonated in the city of Tel Aviv...
Quote: "Police said an explosion ripped through a private white car in the suburban community. According to preliminary police findings the attack was criminally motivated, but officers were cautious not to rule out the possibility of a suicide bombing attack.
But it seems the Israelis are downplaying the incident, perhaps in order not to incite Muslim anger during Ramadan?
Quote: "There were conflicting reports about the cause of the explosion - a police source at the scene said it was "criminal" rather than "terrorist". But police sources on Israeli radio suspected a suicide bomber whose explosives had detonated prematurely.
Update: Police have finally named the man killed in today's explosion, as Yosi Afriat, a man involved in a mafia gang.