Former New York City Mayor Edward I. Koch became a casualty of the Palestinian uprising Tuesday when a rock struck and scratched his head as he toured Jerusalem’s walled Old City.
“I know the stone wasn’t meant for me because everyone likes me,” Koch joked, then continued his tour with Jerusalem Mayor Teddy Kollek.
Koch and Kolleck were walking without a police escort through the narrow streets of an Arab market where all stores were closed for a general strike.
Koch said he hopes American Jews will ignore such incidents and support Israel by coming to visit.
Koch was hit when the thrown rock bounced off a store awning. He bled slightly but stemmed the bleeding with a handkerchief.
In the occupied territories, Israeli soldiers shot and wounded 18 Palestinians during a strike to protest Israeli plans to expel four Arab leaders, residents said.
Shops in the occupied territories stayed closed for the general strike called by the fundamentalist Hamas movement. The Israeli government ordered the four Arabs expelled after the stabbing deaths of three Israelis last Friday.
Arab lawyers from Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank urged the international community Tuesday to intervene to stop Israel from carrying out the deportations.
The plea came as an army judicial panel considered the appeal of the four men. The government has not accused the four Gaza Strip residents of involvement in the killings but said they incited others to violence.
At a news conference in Arab East Jerusalem, Palestinian lawyers said they fear that Israel plans extensive deportations.
“News and reports have confirmed the existence of another list containing tens of Palestinians who will be candidates for deportation,” said Ali Ghuzlan, president of the Arab Lawyers Committee.