Protests spread in Arab world-- "war or an economic boycott against the enemy (Israel)" urged by Libya : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Friday, 6 October, 2000, 19:37 GMT 20:37 UK

Protests spread in Arab world "war or an economic boycott against the enemy (Israel)" urged by Libya

Throughout the Arab world protesters have taken to the streets in sympathy with the Palestinians' day of rage against Israel.

The demonstrations are said to be the most serious in years.

In the Jordanian and Syrian capitals, police used teargas to protect the Israeli and American embassies.

President Mubarak of Egypt has convened a summit of Arab leaders to discuss the crisis in the Middle East.

US embassy closed

Hundreds of police surrounded the US embassy in the Syrian capital, Damascus, as demonstrators expressed their rage at American policy in the Middle East.

The protesters threw stones - the police responded with teargas and water-cannon.

The embassy was closed for the day while police were also deployed to protect other American properties such as the American Cultural Centre.

Official Syrian radio attacked what it called "Israeli provocations" in the West Bank and Gaza.

"Resistance is the way to liberate the land.... and the Palestinian insurgents will do that in the same way that the Lebanese insurgents liberated southern Lebanon", the radio said.

In Amman, Jordanian police used teargas to keep angry demonstrators well away from the Israeli embassy.

Gaddafi's reaction

President Mubarak of Egypt has gained the agreement of most Arab leaders for a summit on 21 and 22 October to discuss the situation in the Palestinian territories.

But the summit has received short shrift from Colonel Gaddafi.

"What will the summit do besides issue denunciations, present condolences to the families of the victims and provide an occasion for Arab leaders to eat and drink?", the Libyan leader asked on a visit to Jordan.

"A summit must declare a war or an economic boycott against the enemy (Israel) but the Arabs are not capable of fighting or boycotting the enemy," Mr Gaddafi told reporters.

Anti- Israeli protests were held in many other parts of the Arab world including Kuwait, Qatar, Lebanon and Egypt.

-- Carl Jenkins (, October 06, 2000

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