Anti-US, Israel protests take place all over Middle East
Thousands march all over Middle East in protest of President Trump's decision to recognize J'lem as Israel's capital; 20,000 march in Amman while 5,000 march near Shatila refugee camp in Lebanon; demonstrations also take place further in Asia, in Malaysia, Indonesia, India's Kashmir region.
Mass protests were staged throughout the Middle East on Friday in solidarity with the Palestinians as hysteria swept the region over President Donald Trump's recognition earlier this week of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.
Following Trump's recognition and declared intention to move the US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Jordan's King Abdullah II and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met in Amman to coordinate a response where they resolved to intensify the momentum of protests.
Delivering on the plan, some 20,000 Jordanians gushed into the streets of Amman following Friday's afternoon prayers, while thousands exhibited their dismay with Trump's declaration in Istanbul.
Iraq, meanwhile, saw a mass demonstration in capital Baghdad with Islamic clerics and the Palestinian ambassador in attendance. Protesters carried signs saying "Trump – the enemy of the nations" and "Jerusalem is ours." Hundreds also demonstrated in neighboring Iran and cried out, "Death to America, death to Israel."
A protest also took place in Cairo's Al-Azhar Mosque and in Beirut and Sidon in Lebanon, where protesters burned photos of the US president. Also in Beirut, a photo of the Temple Mount was screened on a government building.
Not far from Beirut, some 5,000 people participated in a demonstration near the Shatila refugee camp, with protesters carrying Palestinian flags and marching towards the local cemetery, where victims murdered by Christian Phalange militias were buried in the aftermath of the First Lebanon War. Protesters in Sidon, meanwhile, burned photos of Trump.
Demonstrations also took place in Syria, Turkey and other places around the Middle East, but protests against Trump's decision have broken through the boundaries of the region with more than one thousand demonstrators protesting opposite the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia.
In the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, hundreds demonstrated in front of the American Embassy. President Joko Widodo instructing his minister of foreign affairs to summon the American ambassador to provide clarifications, whereas the embassy advised US citizens currently in the Islamic country to stay away from the protests.
Anti-Trump sentiment reached as far as the disputed Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir—the only state in the country with a Muslim majority—where hundreds demonstrated in Srinagar, burned US and Israeli flags and called Trump's decision "anti-Muslim."
Local government forbade prayer in the city's central mosque for fear riots will break out following the traditional Friday prayer. A curfew was also put in place in certain parts of the city. In the past, Kashmir voiced solidarity with the Palestinians with violent protests erupting after clashes between the Palestinians and Israel.
Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi, similarly to his Indonesian counterpart, called in the American ambassador in the country to voice his protestations on recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital.
Saudi newspaper Okaz published a photo of the Al-Aqsa Mosque with "No peace, Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Palestine" written underneath in Hebrew.
The Islamic State published an article in its an-Naba weekly titled "Jerusalem – its defenders are God-fearing" in which the authors ridiculed the wailing and gnashing of teeth seen around the Arab and Islamic world regarding the decision, especially from "despotic" Arab rulers. "Jerusalem has been in the hands of Jews for 60 years and some people are crying about the Crusaders declaring it their capital today," the article mocked.