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Protestors curse Israelis during event
Photo: Eytan Levy
Spain: Pro-Palestinian activists attack Israeli businessmen
Conference held by Spain-Israel Chamber of Commerce at Madrid's Autonomous University cut short after 200 protestors burst into hall chanting, 'Murderers, get out of Gaza'; one Israeli lightly wounded when police vehicle stoned

Five Israeli businessmen were attacked on Monday by pro-Palestinian activists during a conference at the Autonomous University of Madrid.

  

Listen to attack on Israeli businessmen

 

During the incident, stones and paint were thrown at the businessmen. No serious injuries were reported, but one Israeli sustained light wounds to his head.

 

The conference, which was cut short due to the violence, was initiated by the university and the Spain-Israel Chamber of Commerce.

 

Some 200 anti-Israel protestors burst into the hall and prevented the opening of panel discussions.

 


'It's difficult in Madrid.' Activists protest in event hall (Photo: Eytan Levy)

 

According to Spanish media, the organizers, who feared acts of protest over last week's deadly Israeli commando raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla, changed the conference's venue at the last minute. However, the activists discovered the new location and stormed in while chanting, "Murderers, murderers. Get out of Gaza" and "Freedom to the Palestinian people."

 

Madrid police were alerted to the scene and escorted the Israeli businessmen out of the university. The protestors threw stones, paint and other objects at the police patrol cars as they were heading out of the institution. One of the Israelis, Emefcy CEO Eytan Levy, was hit by a rock that shattered the windshield of one of the police vehicles. Levy was treated at scene but asked not to be evacuated to a hospital.

 

Madrid police launched an investigation into the incident, but no arrests have been made as of yet. Most of the rioters were Muslim, police said.

 

The Israeli embassy in the Spanish capital condemned the incident. One official described the anti-Israeli atmosphere in Madrid.

 

"It is very difficult here in Spain, and this violent rally (at the university) is the result of this atmosphere," embassy employee Lior Hayat said.

 

"The embassy was egged earlier in the week. Most of the protestors are of Arab-Palestinian descent. During Operation Cast Lead stones were thrown at the embassy. The situation in Madrid is not easy," he said. 

 

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