HUNDREDS of protesters set fire to the guard tower at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut as brutal conflict continues to grip the Middle East.
Avalon.redA Lebanese protestor hurls stones at a burning building just outside the US Embassy[/caption]
AFPThe protest came after a Hamas-run hospital in the Gaza Strip was hit by a rocket, killing almost 500[/caption]
EPAMore than 100 protesters near the embassy were carrying Palestinean flags, according to Reuters[/caption]
GettyPresident Joe Biden is set to arrive in Tel Aviv today in his most public display of support for Israel since the October 7 attacks[/caption]
More than 100 protesters were surrounding the U.S. embassy carrying Palestinean flags, according to Reuters.
The protest was driven by a Hezbollah statement for people around the Arab world to start protests in front of Israeli embassies, in what they called a “day of rage”.
Following Hezbollah’s call, hundreds of demonstrators scuffled with Lebanese security forces outside the US embassy in the Beirut suburb of Awkar, where protesters hurled stones and set a building on fire, according to AFP.
Protesters also threw rocks and Molotov cocktails at demonstrations, which caused the guard tower to be set ablaze.
Tear gas was also deployed near the embassy, reported Fox News.
Israel and Palestinians have traded blame for the blast, though neither’s claim could be independently verified.
Israel has denied responsibility for the deadly attack at the al-Ahli Hospital and blamed Hamas for the failed rocket launch that sent hundreds fleeing.
An Israel Defense Forces spokesperson, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, said: “We are running on it because someone is doing a fake on us, on Israel.”
The Israeli army said intelligence reports reveal an Islamic Jihad rocket misfired and hit the hospital.
But a spokesman for Islamic Jihad – a group that claims to be fighting Israel alongside Hamas – said this is “completely incorrect” and accused the IDF of “trying to cover for the horrifying crime and massacre they committed”.
Following the devastating hospital blast, hundreds also gathered at the French embassy in Beirut, raising Hezbollah flags and hurling stones that piled up at the embassy’s main entrance.
It comes as U.S President Joe Biden is set to arrive in Tel Aviv today in what will be his most forceful public display of support for Israel since Hamas first unleashed its horrors at a music festival in southern Israel on October 7.
On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that Biden will “hear from Israel what it needs to defend its people”.
Blinken added that the President will learn how Israel will operate in a way that minimises civilian casualties and enables humanitarian assistance in Gaza – without providing any benefit to the Hamas terrorist organisation.
Meanwhile, the American military has been increasing its firepower in the region, looking to prevent Iran and other Iran-backed groups from becoming involved in the conflict.
The US empire of steel includes a network of bases in the Middle East with 2,000 troops, 2,400 Marines, and 13 warships now on alert.
The United States has also told some 2,000 troops to be ready to deploy within 24 hours if notified – instead of the usual 96 hours – and could include units that provide assistance like medical aid if needed, a US official said on Monday.
It comes as several other world leaders are primed to head to Israel – including UK PM Rishi Sunak who could visit on Thursday as part of a wider tour of the region, which could include stops in Egypt and Jordan.
The United States authorised non-essential personnel and their families to leave their embassy near Beirut on Tuesday, citing the unpredictable security situation in Lebanon due to the Israel-Hamas war.
The State Department also raised its travel advisory for Lebanon from level three, issued in July, to the highest available level four, as it told Americans to avoid the country.
“Do not travel to Lebanon due to the unpredictable security situation related to rocket, missile, and artillery exchanges between Israel and Hezbollah or other armed militant factions,” the State Department said in a statement Tuesday.
Hamas launched a bloody massacre in Israel on October 7 where terrorists shot, stabbed, and burned to death more than 1,400 people – most of them civilians.
Reeling from the worst attack in its history, Israel launched a wave of retaliatory air strikes against the Gaza Strip, killing about 3,000 people, mostly civilians.
Lebanon-based Hezbollah, which like Hamas is backed by Iran, has since been involved in a series of tit-for-tat incidents along the south Lebanese border with Israel.
Since October 7, fire along the Israel-Lebanon border has killed at least 18 people on the Lebanese side — mostly fighters, but also a Reuters journalist and two civilians.
At least three people have been killed on the Israeli side.
France has also urged its citizens to avoid travel to Lebanon, while several Western airlines have suspended flights.
Britain’s foreign office has told its nationals in Lebanon to “consider whether you need to remain and, if not, leave by commercial means while they are still available.”
Canada, Spain, Germany, and Australia have also issued travel warnings.
AFPProtesters threw rocks and Molotov cocktails during the demonstration[/caption]
AFPThe protests were sparked after a Hezbollah statement urged people around the Arab world to start protests in front of Israeli embassies[/caption]
EPAProtesters reportedly hurled stones at the building and deployed tear gas[/caption]Leave a comment