Swimming team coaches Palestinian Osama Judeh (C-R) and Israeli Rotem Lehman (C-L) chat as they work at the YMCA swimming pool in Jerusalem on November 23, 2014. AFP PHOTO/GALI TIBBON
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The two young Jerusalem shop assistants wear similar clothes and makeup. Only their names tell them apart as Israeli and Palestinian. Avital and Iman spend their days chatting at a budget clothes shop in West Jerusalem. Last week, two Palestinians armed with a gun and meat cleavers killed five people at a synagogue – the culmination of months of tension, and after a series of apparent "lone-wolf" attacks, including hit-and-runs in which Palestinian drivers killed four people.The violence in Jerusalem began in earnest in July, when Jewish extremists burned alive a 16-year-old Palestinian boy in apparent revenge for the killing of three Jewish teenagers in the occupied West Bank.A bloody July-August war in the Gaza Strip, which killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians and 73 on the Israeli side, exacerbated tensions and resulted in near daily clashes between police and East Jerusalem youths.
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