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Police arrest dozens of protesters inside Israeli Consulate building

Pro-Palestinian demonstrator posing inside lobby of consulate building Associated Press/Photo by Jeff Chiu

Police arrest dozens of protesters inside Israeli Consulate building

Authorities arrested 70 pro-Palestinian protesters on Monday for trespassing in the San Francisco building that houses the Israeli Consulate. Footage posted by a group sympathetic to the demonstration appeared to show people crowding the building’s lobby while chanting “Free Palestine,” “Long live the intifada,” and “From the river to the sea.” The group claims roughly 100 demonstrators were in attendance. “We are occupying the occupier’s building,” one demonstrator announced to the lobby. Many wore Arabic keffiyehs and held signs. Protest leaders also hung a large banner reading “Zionism kills” from a second-floor railing alongside an LGBTQ+ flag. Demonstrators never entered consular offices, instead opting to mount a sit-in inside the lobby.

Police invited demonstrators to continue protesting outside the building but warned they would be arrested if they remained in the lobby. Protesters refused and were escorted out of the building in zip ties and loaded into the back of a police van, where they continued chanting. No one was injured and all were charged with trespassing, according to a statement from the San Francisco Police Department reported by Reuters.

Has the consulate said anything? The consulate is appalled but not surprised by the pro-Hamas rioters’ attempt to stall Israeli diplomacy, said Marco Sermoneta, Consul General of Israel to the Pacific Northwest. These are the same people who celebrated the rape and murder of hundreds of Israelis after the Oct. 7 attacks, he said. The mobs have made California campuses dangerous for Jews and turned city council meetings into anti-Semitic spectacles, Sermoneta added.

Dig deeper: Read my report in The Sift about pro-Palestinian protests on several California college campuses.

Christina Grube

Christina Grube is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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