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Israel to allow Muslim prayers at Jerusalem holy site

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JERUSALEM — Israeli authorities say they have decided to reopen a key Jerusalem holy site for Muslim worshippers on Friday.

PHOTO: Relatives comfort each other after Moatez Higazi was shot in east Jerusalem, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Israeli police shot and killed Palestinian Moatez Higazi suspected of trying to kill a hard-line Jewish activist in Jerusalem, an incident that quickly sparked clashes between masked stone throwers and Israeli riot police, threatening to further enflame the already high tensions in the city. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
Relatives comfort each other after Moatez Higazi was shot in east Jerusalem, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Israeli police shot and killed Palestinian Moatez Higazi suspected of trying to kill a hard-line Jewish activist in Jerusalem, an incident that quickly sparked clashes between masked stone throwers and Israeli riot police, threatening to further enflame the already high tensions in the city. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)

Israel blocked access to the Al Aqsa Mosque compound on Thursday, after clashes erupted in the city following the killing of a Palestinian suspect wanted in the shooting of a hard-line Jewish activist. It was the first time Israel has closed the site since 2000.

In a statement, police said that Muslim men over the age of 50 and women of all ages could attend Friday's weekly prayers.

Palestinians had condemned the closure as a "declaration of war."

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PHOTO: Relatives comfort each other after Moatez Higazi was shot in east Jerusalem, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Israeli police shot and killed Palestinian Moatez Higazi suspected of trying to kill a hard-line Jewish activist in Jerusalem, an incident that quickly sparked clashes between masked stone throwers and Israeli riot police, threatening to further enflame the already high tensions in the city. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
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