Thousands protest against the Israeli attacks on Gaza
Crowds of thousands swept into the streets of cities around the Middle East on Sunday to denounce Israel's massive assault on the Gaza Strip.
Several of Sunday's protests turned violent. In Lebanon, police fired tear gas to stop dozens of demonstrators from reaching the Egyptian Embassy. Some in the crowd hurled stones at the embassy compound. Hamas representative in Beirut Osama Hamdan told the crowd that his movement had no choice but to fight. "We have one alternative which is to be steadfast and resist and then we will be victorious," Hamdan said.
In the capital of Syria, more than 5,000 people marched toward the central Youssef al-Azmeh square, where they burned an Israeli and an American flag.
In Amman, Jordan, about 5,000 lawyers marched toward parliament to demand the Israeli ambassador's expulsion and the closure of the embassy. "No for peace, yes to the rifle," they chanted. The U.S. Embassy in Jordan warned Americans to avoid areas of demonstrations.
In Dubai, hundreds of demonstrators gathered at the Palestinian consulate.
In Egypt, more than 50,000 people took to the streets of a number of cities. The largest protest saw some 8,000 people demonstrate on the streets of Assiut, a city in southern Egypt, a security official said, with another 3,000 gathering in Minya, south of Cairo.
According to AFP, a security official said 4,000 people took part in another anti-Israel and pro-Gaza demonstration in the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria, the security official said. Another 4,000 people rallied outside the Doctors' Syndicate in the capital against the Israeli onslaught.
Eight thousand people demonstrated at Cairo University, with another 5,000 involved in another demonstration at Ein Shams University, outside the capital.
A security official said that many of the demonstrations were started by members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood.