Palestinians burn Trump effigies, riot to protest Bahrain conference

As Arab nations and the U.S. began meetings in Bahrain designed to solve the Mideast conflict, Palestinians hurled stones at Israeli soldiers and set ablaze effigies of the American president.

By World Israel News and AP

Palestinians burned effigies of U.S. President Donald Trump and marched a donkey pasted over with images of Gulf royals in Samaria on Tuesday, as the U.S. prepares to open its conference in Bahrain, which focuses on the economic portion of the White House’s long-awaited plan for Mideast peace.

At this week’s conference, the Trump administration hopes to draw pledges from business leaders and wealthy Gulf states to fund its economic plan, which calls for $50 billion of investment and infrastructure projects in Judea and Samaria, Gaza and neighboring Arab countries.

Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan and various Gulf states have sent finance officials to the workshop. The White House says it did not invite Israeli representatives, to keep the event “apolitical.”

Consistent with its boycott of the Trump administration, the Palestinian Authority (PA.) rejected the plan site unseen and wants nothing to do with the conference.

Thousands across Judea and Samaria held up signs saying “Down with the Bahrain conference!”

Scattered clashes erupted as Palestinian rioters hurled stones at Israeli soldiers, who responded with crowd control tactics to disperse the rioters. In Shechem (Nablus), protesters hanged an effigy of President Trump from a column.

In Bethlehem, the protesters’ donkey took center stage, its backside covered with the crossed-out faces of Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who are viewed as supporting the White House’s efforts.

Multiple Palestinian factions, including the Gaza Strip’s brutal Hamas terror group, demanded “resistance” to coincide with the conference, set to begin Tuesday night.

“Popular resistance” is often a euphemism within Palestinian society for perpetrating terror and other acts of violence against Israeli civilians.

In Gaza, stores and public institutions shuttered Tuesday.

Notwithstanding rampant poverty in Gaza, where unemployment exceeds 50%, Palestinian leadership has expressed universal opposition to the Trump team’s ambitious proposal, which envisions health, education and public works projects to improve Palestinian quality of life.

In Beirut, Lebanon, hundreds of Palestinians took part in a protest orchestrated by Hamas outside the U.N. headquarters, chanting against the economic workshop and the possible naturalization of Palestinians in Lebanon.

Some 175,000 Palestinians live in Lebanon, but demand the right to to live in Israel as a condition of any future resolution to the conflict.

Lebanon keeps Palestinians living in harsh conditions, confined to squalid camps and deprived of basic rights afforded to Lebanese citizen.

According to some, the U.S. economic plan’s large sums for Jordan and Lebanon, countries with substantial Palestinian populations, foretell a requirement that these nations absorb their Palestinian populations as citizens, eliminating the prospect of their future immigration to Israel.

Mahfouz Monawar, head of international relations for the Islamic Jihad terror group in Lebanon said: “Today the Palestinian people are saying clearly that the deal of the century with all its components and today with what is going in Manama workshop do not represent the Palestinians.”