Fearing a violent group of Palestinian protesters, a US delegation fled Bethlehem during a business conference.
By: World Israel News Staff
A delegation of US diplomats was forced to cut short a business event in Bethlehem and flee the city on Tuesday after violent Palestinian protesters stormed the workshop.
The Palestinian mob, which was protesting President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, threw tomatoes at the delegation’s car as they left and kicked the vehicles, agencies reported.
Reuters reported that one of the cars was damaged.
Samir Hazboun, head of the Palestinian Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce, told AFP that a training session for local business people about digital commerce with an American expert and a delegation from the US consulate in Jerusalem was in session when the incident occurred.
“We were surprised when a number of angry protesters held an extraordinary protest, which forced us to end the course and for the American trainer to leave immediately with the American consulate delegation,” Hazboun explained.
The US Consulate in Jerusalem declined comment, Reuters reported.
A State Department spokesperson stated that “the United States opposes the use of violence and intimidation to express political views. This non-political program was one part of long-term US engagement to create economic opportunities for Palestinians.”
On Saturday, a crowd of Palestinians hanged and burned effigies of Trump and Vice President Pence in al-Aida near Bethlehem.