Israel to open five new East Jerusalem police stations

A police official said that 200 officers have been recruited so far

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Israel will open five new police stations in East Jerusalem, Minister of Internal Security Gilad Erdan announced Wednesday.

“Over the years, a large gap has opened between the western and eastern parts of the city in terms of policing, and that's the gap we want to fill with these new positions,” Minister of Internal Security Gilad Erdan told Army Radio.

“Our national sovereignty begins by exercising our sovereignty over Jerusalem.”

There are currently no Israeli police stations in Palestinian neighborhoods in east Jerusalem apart from in the Old City, a statement from police spokeswoman Luba Samri said.

The stations will be installed in the neighborhoods of Ras al-Amud, Jabal Mukaber, Silwan, Issawiya and Sur Baher.These neighborhoods are often the scene of disturbances by Palestinians during tense periods.

The minister said that the creation of these posts is part of a four-year plan that provides for the recruitment of 1,200 new police officers in Jerusalem.

Police official Yuval Ben Ami told Army Radio that 200 officers had been recruited so far.

“We have a problem hiring police officers because some do not want to be deployed in [Palestinian] neighborhoods,” he said, adding they were seeking to increase salaries as a draw.