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Angry protesters shouted pro-Palestinian messages and flew Palestinian flags and in some instances clashed with security in demonstrations from Lebanon to the West Bank and even as far as Washington, D.C.
In Amman, Jordan, more than a thousand people marched toward the Israeli Embassy in the hours after news spread of an explosion at a hospital in Gaza. Security forces tear-gassed people trying to reach the building and riot police managed to push back crowds away from the embassy.
Videos posted online show hundreds of people gathering not far from the U.S. Embassy in Beirut in the second day of demonstrations on Wednesday. Protesters reportedly clashed with police there as well, took down a security wall and cut a fence on the road heading to the embassy.
The anger was sparked after the blast at the Al Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza on Tuesday where hundreds were killed in the explosion. Many called for the end of the attacks on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Others expressed anger at what they see is the world turning its back on the Palestinian people.
The raw emotion felt by many hitting the streets in protest in the Middle East, including in Egypt, Morocco and Iran, underscores the spreading tension in the region from the Israel-Hamas conflict.
The U.S. embassy in Beirut issued a warning Wednesday telling U.S. citizens there to avoid the Awkar area “given the potential for further demonstrations.” The embassy remained open but the State Department updated its travel advisory for Lebanon to a Level 4: Do Not Travel.
“The Department of State urges U.S. citizens in Lebanon to make plans to depart as soon as possible while commercial options are still available,” the agency said.
The clashes continued late Wednesday as President Joe Biden met with Israeli leaders in Tel Aviv. He expressed support for Israel and doubled down on the assertion that the explosion at the hospital was the result of a Palestinian militant group and not an Israel attack. Hamas, the Palestinian group that controls Gaza, and other Arab countries placed the blame on Israel.
Palestinian officials announced a strike on Wednesday in the West Bank in response to the Gaza hospital tragedy. Many stores and businesses were closed as part of this demonstration.
In many neighborhoods in the West Bank, including Ramallah, Nablus and Hebron, Palestinians took to the streets. Some reportedly threw rocks at Israeli security in the West Bank.
Reuters reported that Israeli forces shot two Palestinian teens dead near Ramallah during those protests.
In Washington, an estimated 300 people were arrested during a protest in the Capitol, the U.S. Capitol Police told NPR, and three were charged with assaulting police officers.
American Jewish organizations gathered at the Capitol on Wednesday criticizing the Israeli government and demanding a ceasefire.
Jewish Voice for Peace and If Not Now Org marched in the streets calling for the end of “genocide in Palestine.” They entered the Capitol building late in the afternoon and continued to hold demonstrations in the Cannon House Office Building until police started to make arrests.
The Capitol Police said Wednesday night that the number of people arrested could change by Thursday once everyone has been processed.