U.S. Em­bassy un­der siege

Se­cu­rity guard stabbed; de­mon­stra­tors storm U.S. Em­bassy in Le­banon

USA TODAY US Edition - - FRONT PAGE - Steve Reilly USA TO­DAY

Pro­test­ers an­gry over the United States’ recog­ni­tion of Jerusalem as the cap­i­tal of Is­rael storm the U.S. Em­bassy east of Beirut, where they were met by Le­banese se­cu­rity forces fir­ing tear gas and wa­ter can­nons. Vi­o­lence also flared in Is­rael and around the world Sun­day.

Un­rest con­tin­ued to erupt across the Mid­dle East over the week­end af­ter Pres­i­dent Trump’s de­ci­sion to rec­og­nize Jerusalem as the cap­i­tal of Is­rael and be­gin the process of mov­ing the U.S. Em­bassy there.

Pro­test­ers in Beirut hurled rocks and plas­tic wa­ter bot­tles to­ward the U.S. Em­bassy, while a se­cu­rity guard was stabbed in Jerusalem. Demon­stra­tions were held in Is­rael and across the world.

The protest in Le­banon, which is home to 450,000 refugees, was met with tear gas and wa­ter can­nons fired by Le­banese se­cu­rity forces on Sun­day, Reuters re­ported.

The U.S. Em­bassy in Beirut is­sued a se­cu­rity mes­sage re­mind­ing U.S. cit­i­zens of “the need for cau­tion and aware­ness of per­sonal se­cu­rity.”

“U.S. Em­bassy Beirut is aware that sev­eral groups have an­nounced pub­lic protests fol­low­ing the U.S. an­nounce­ment of a new pol­icy with re­gard to the sta­tus of Jerusalem,” the em­bassy said in a state­ment. “Demon­stra­tions have the po­ten­tial to be­come vi­o­lent.”

The Beirut pro­test­ers burned U.S. and Is­raeli flags, piles of garbage and an ef­figy of Trump, the As­so­ci­ated Press re­ported.

Pro­test­ers pried open the gate of the em­bassy com­pound but were turned back by se­cu­rity forces, ac­cord­ing to Haaretz.

Thou­sands also par­tic­i­pated in demon­stra­tions in Jakarta, In­done­sia, on Sun­day in re­sponse to Trump’s state­ment.

The pro­test­ers car­ried flags and ban­ners ex­press­ing sol­i­dar­ity with Pales- tini­ans, ac­cord­ing to Agence France

Presse.

Hun­dreds of Is­raeli Arabs protested Sun­day along a ma­jor high­way in the Wadi Ara area of north­ern Is­rael, AP re­ported, dam­ag­ing sev­eral ve­hi­cles and leav­ing three peo­ple wounded. In re­sponse to the protests, Is­raeli De­fense Min­is­ter Avig­dor Lieber­man called for a boy­cott of Arab busi­nesses in that re­gion.

In Jerusalem, a Pales­tinian was ar­rested Sun­day af­ter al­legedly stab­bing a se­cu­rity guard, ac­cord­ing to Is­raeli po­lice. Po­lice spokesman Micky Rosen­feld said on Twit­ter that the se­cu­rity guard was se­ri­ously in­jured in the at­tack. The Jerusalem stab­bing ap­pears to be the first since Trump’s an­nounce­ment of his de­ci­sion, ac­cord­ing to AP.

Pope Fran­cis called Sun­day for lead­ers to com­mit to avoid­ing out­breaks of fur­ther vi­o­lence.

“The Holy Father re­news his ap­peal for the wis­dom and pru­dence of every­one, and raises fer­vent prayers so that the lead­ers of na­tions, in this time of spe­cial grav­ity, com­mit them­selves to avert a new spi­ral of vi­o­lence,” the Vat­i­can said in a state­ment.

BILAL HUS­SEIN/AP

Pro­test­ers burn an Is­raeli flag at the U.S. Em­bassy in Le­banon on Sun­day. De­mon­stra­tors threw stones and burned an ef­figy of Pres­i­dent Trump to protest U.S. recog­ni­tion of Jerusalem as Is­rael’s cap­i­tal. BILAL HUS­SEIN/AP

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