Egyptians storm Israeli embassy in mass protest

In World News on September 10, 2011 at 3:25 am

By Richard Hall

Hundreds of Egyptian protesters stormed the Israeli embassy in Cairo last night, tearing down parts of a security wall using hammers, poles and their bare hands.

Thousands protested elsewhere in the country, reflecting a growing anger with the country’s military rulers over the slow pace of reform, seven months after the toppling of Hosni Mubarak.

Demonstrators marched to the embassy from another protest in Tahrir Square, where they demanded a halt to military trials of civilians and a timetable for parliamentary elections.

Egyptian security forces did not intervene as crowds climbed the embassy’s security wall, pummelling it with sledge hammers and tearing away large sections of the cement and metal barrier. The Israeli flag was quickly torn down from the top of the 21-storey building for the second time this month.

A group of 30 protesters broke into the embassy building just before midnight, and dropped hundreds of Hebrew-language documents from the windows on to the crowds below.

Earlier, protesters had set fire to a police truck outside the embassy and tried to attack a nearby police station but were turned back by the military.

The Israeli embassy has become a focal point for protests in recent months, as calls have grown for Egypt to end its 1979 peace treaty with Israel, signed under Mubarak. The treaty has been deeply unpopular with the Egyptian public, and anger over ties between the two countries has grown since Israeli forces mistakenly killed five Egyptian police officers last month when they responded to…

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