Israeli Police Raid Hotel as French FM Meets Palestinians
Israeli police raided a hotel in occupied east Jerusalem Tuesday where French Foreign Minister Hubert Vedrine was meeting Palestinian officials, seizing an identity card of a French security guard, an AFP reporter on the scene said.
Several uniformed Israeli police officers burst into the hotel and tried to enter the first-floor suite where Vedrine was meeting eight Palestinian officials from east Jerusalem, including Arab League spokeswoman Hanan Ashrawi.
A security guard from the French consulate and several French diplomats were involved in a brief scuffle of pushing and shoving as they tried to stop the police entering the suite.
The police called for reinforcements as tensions in the ante-room grew. The officers finally left without entering Vedrine's suite, but first confiscated an accreditation card of a consul security guard.
They also tried, but failed, to take the accreditation card of the vice consul.
The American Colony hotel where the incident took place is next to Orient House, the unofficial Palestinian headquarters in Jerusalem that Israel shut down on August 10 after a Palestinian suicide bomber killed 15 people in an attack on a pizzeria in the city – JERUSALEM (AFP)
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