Friday, September 14, 2012

Protests in Gaza, Jerusalem against anti-Islam video

Maan News Agency
Published today (updated) 14/09/2012 16:50
Israeli police stand behind shields during clashes with stone-throwing
Palestinian protesters at a demonstration denouncing a film that mocks
Prophet Mohammed, in Jerusalem's Old City on Sept. 14.
(Reuters/Ammar Awad)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Hundreds of protesters gathered in Jerusalem's Old City and the Gaza Strip on Friday, as regional protests continued against an anti-Islam video produced in the US.

Around 400 protesters left Friday prayers in Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque and tried to march towards the US consulate, Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said.

Israeli forces prevented protesters reaching the consulate, blocking the rally at Damascus Gate using stun grenades. Four people were detained, Rosenfeld told Ma'an.

Hundreds gathered in cities across the Gaza Strip on Friday, after Hamas and Islamic Jihad called for demonstrations against the video for its insult to the prophet.

Jihad leader Abu Tariq al-Mdalal said the protests "send a message to the whole world condemning this attack against our prophet... we call on the Arab world to use all its abilities to respond to this attack, and to close the (Israeli) and US embassies."

Hamas Minister of Religious Affairs Ismail Radwan called on the Arab and Islamic world "to continue peaceful protest and rejection (of the video)."

"We should boycott all US products as the US was involved in this attack," he added.

Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh called for the US administration to apologize to the Arab and Muslim world in his Friday sermon.

US-based Egyptian Coptic activists and American evangelical Christians have been linked to production and promotion of the film, which portrays the Prophet as a womanizer, a homosexual and a child abuser.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has condemned the film as "disgusting and reprehensible," adding that the US government had "absolutely nothing to do with (it)."

Apparently produced in California, the video sparked an attack on a US mission in Libya on Tuesday that killed the ambassador and three other Americans.

One demonstrator was killed and two others were wounded in clashes with security forces in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli on Friday in protests over the production and against the pope's visit to Lebanon.

Protesters also clashed with police near the US embassy in Cairo on Friday before a nationwide protest called by the Muslim Brotherhood.

Marches sparked clashes with police in Yemen, where one person died and 15 were injured on Thursday when the US embassy compound was stormed, and crowds gathered against video in Malaysia, Bangladesh and Iraq.