Police in east Jerusalem (Photo: Noam Dabul Dvir)

Hundreds of worshipers leaving the al-Aqsa Mosque after Friday prayers hurled stones at police officers and rioted near Jerusalem’s Damascus Gate.

The demonstrators, protesting against the anti-Islam film that sparked riots across the Middle East, started marching towards the US Consulate but were blocked by police officers who used shock grenades against them. Several officers were lightly injured by stones. Some protesters were detained.

Hundreds in Akko also rallied after prayers at the al-Jazer Mosque calling for the struggle against all those trying to hurt Islam to continue. Akko Police chief Victor Buskila said that order is being maintained.

“The protesters are crying ‘Allahu Akbar’ and pro-Muhammad calls, not swear words or slander,” one bystander said. “It’s not against the State.”

Hundreds also rallied in the Wadi Ara region and in the towns of Baqa al-Gharbia and Umm al-Fahm. The protesters shouted “We love you Muhammad, we won’t allow your name to be tarnished.”

Police in east Jerusalem (Photo: Noam Dabul Dvir)

The film “Innocence of Muslims” ignited riots across the Muslim world on Tuesday which led to the killing of US Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three embassy staff. Friday saw the riots spread beyond the Middle East as scores in India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, the Philippines and Indonesia rallied after prayers. Protests were also held in Sudan, Kenya, Nigeria, Egypt, Yemen, Kuwait, Iran and Qatar, among others.

Media in Jordan reported that hundreds of Salafi followers were marching towards the US Embassy in Amman. The protesters burned US flags abd cried out “Listen Obama, We’re all Osama here,” in reference to the slain al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Jordan has arranged for reinforced security around the embassy.

In Lebanon, one demonstrator was killed and two others were wounded in clashes with security forces in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli in Islamist protests over the offensive film and against the pope’s visit to the country.

A security source said the man was killed as protesters tried to storm a government building. Earlier, hundreds of protesters torched a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in the city, witnesses said, chanting against the pope’s visit and shouting anti-American slogans. Twelve members of the security forces were wounded by stones thrown by protesters, the source said.

Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians held a protest march in Gaza heading towards the Legislative Council building.

Embassies invaded

Protesters in Tunisia set fire to the American School in the capital, after hundreds of people invaded the US embassy compound there and clashed with riot police, a Reuters reporter said. The school was closed on Friday.

Protesters had earlier set fire to trees in the US embassy compound. “Obama, Obama, we are all Osamas,” the protesters chanted.

In Sudan, rioters clambered over the walls of the US embassy compound in Khartoum, and embassy guards fired warning shots, a Reuters witness said.

Protesters hosted an Islamic flag at the embassy after breaching an outer security wall, the witness said. One person was left lying in a pool of blood after being struck by a police car and police withdrew from the area shortly after the incident, the witness added.

Sudanese demonstrators also stormed the German embassy in the capital and raised an Islamic flag above the mission.

A Reuters reporter saw protesters enter the embassy building in central Khartoum, smash windows and start a fire in front of the main gate. It was not immediately clear why European missions were being targeted.

Police had earlier tried to disperse some 5,000 protesters who had surrounded the German and nearby British embassy by firing volleys of teargas.

In Bangladesh, 10,000 people protested in capital Dhaka, burned US and Israeli flags and held their shoes up.

Legislators in Pakistan passed a bill that condemns the film and called on the US to take appropriate measures.

In Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country, worshippers demonstrated outside the US Embassy in Jakarta and raised signs reading “Prophet Muhammad is the symbol of Islam.”

Thousands also demonstrated in Tehran and called “Death to the United States and Death of Israel,” Iranian TV reported.

In Cairo, Al-Jazeera reported that citizens placed small barriers preventing the protesters from reaching the US embassy. According to reports, few heeded the call to take part in the “Million-man march.”

It was later reported by Britain’s The Guardian that the Muslim Brotherhood canceled the protests in Egypt. Earlier, President Mohammed Morsi said that it’s up to Muslims as part of their Islamic duty to protect embassies and foreign diplomats who are guests in the country.


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