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Palestinians protest on West Bank over Trump stance
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Palestinians protest on West Bank over Trump stance

Violent protests have broken out in the West Bank today after US President Donald Trump enraged the Middle East by recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Palestinians torched debris and hurled rocks towards Israeli troops who fired tear gas and water cannons to disperse a demonstration in Bethlehem.

Medics said 31 people have been injured by Israeli army gunfire during clashes in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip with rallies underway in the cities of Nablus, Jenin and Ramallah. In Hebron and Al-Bireh, thousands of demonstrators marched with chants of 'Jerusalem is the capital of the State of Palestine', witnesses said.

It comes after Trump sparked fury with his White House announcement yesterday, which changed decades of American policy and sparked warnings from Hamas of a new intifada, or uprising, against Israel.

Amid growing fears of fresh bloodshed in the region, the Islamist group said the President had 'opened the gates of hell' with his 'flagrant aggression' while a pro-Hezbollah newspaper in Lebanon has declared 'Death to America' on a front page showing a burning US flag. 

This morning, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Trump of throwing the Middle East into a 'ring of fire' and compared him to a 'blender' stirring up trouble in the area. The Country's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said the US 'has pulled the pin on a bomb ready to blow in the region.'

President Erdogan spoke to Pope Francis on the phone and the pair agreed there should be no attempts to change Jerusalem's status.

'Emphasising that Jerusalem is sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims, President Erdogan and Pope Francis stated that any attempt to change the city's status should be avoided,' sources in the President's office said.

Russia said today that it viewed Trump's move with 'serious concern' and will criticise the new stance at the UN Security Council. Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson described the new stance as 'not helpful' while France rejected the 'unilateral' decision and Germany said Jerusalem's status could only be resolved on the basis of a two-state solution.

But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Trump had 'bound himself forever' to the history of Jerusalem with his announcement and claimed other states are now considering following the U.S. lead. 

Violent protests have broken out in Bethlehem (pictured) today after US President Donald Trump enraged the Middle East by recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital

Violent protests have broken out in Bethlehem (pictured) today after US President Donald Trump enraged the Middle East by recognising Jerusalem as Israel's capital

Footage shows Palestinians burning tyres and hurling rocks towards Israeli troops who fired off tear gas to disperse the demonstration in the city

Footage shows Palestinians burning tyres and hurling rocks towards Israeli troops who fired off tear gas to disperse the demonstration in the city

Boiling over: Rallies are also underway in the West Bank cities of Hebron, Ramallah (pictured), Nablus and Jenin

Boiling over: Rallies are also underway in the West Bank cities of Hebron, Ramallah (pictured), Nablus and Jenin

Furious Palestinian protesters could be seen burning an effigy of Donald Trump in the West Bank city of Nablus this morning

Furious Palestinian protesters could be seen burning an effigy of Donald Trump in the West Bank city of Nablus this morning

A Palestinian protester prepares to hurl a rock at Israeli troops during a rally in the West Bank city of Ramallah this morning

A Palestinian protester prepares to hurl a rock at Israeli troops during a rally in the West Bank city of Ramallah this morning

Protesters burned tyres and hurled rocks at troops in Ramallah today as tensions mounted over Donald Trump's new stance on Jerusalem

Protesters burned tyres and hurled rocks at troops in Ramallah today as tensions mounted over Donald Trump's new stance on Jerusalem

Violence: There were clashes on the streets of Ramallah as protesters hurled rocks and Israeli troops responded with tear gas

Violence: There were clashes on the streets of Ramallah as protesters hurled rocks and Israeli troops responded with tear gas

Donald Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capitol on Wednesday and launched a process to move the U.S. embassy there, casting his decision as an act of political courage

Donald Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capitol on Wednesday and launched a process to move the U.S. embassy there, casting his decision as an act of political courage

Palestinian protesters clash with Israeli forces near an Israeli checkpoint in the West Bank city of Ramallah this morning

Palestinian protesters clash with Israeli forces near an Israeli checkpoint in the West Bank city of Ramallah this morning

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