News / Middle East

    Angry Egypt Protesters Tear Down US Embassy Flag

    Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, September 11, 2012.Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, September 11, 2012.
    x
    Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, September 11, 2012.
    Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, September 11, 2012.
    Elizabeth Arrott
    Protesters angry over what they believed was an insult to Islam breached a wall of the U.S. embassy Tuesday, pulling down the American flag and raising Islamic banners in its place.

    The protest began peacefully outside the embassy walls, with demonstrators shouting chants against a video they said was financed by Coptic Christians in the United States that insulted the Prophet Mohammed.

    But a handful of the demonstrators managed to jump over the embassy compound walls, tearing down the U.S. flag and raising black flags printed with Islamic religious inscriptions.

    An official at the embassy said that contrary to a report in the Egyptian media, no guns were drawn and no shots fired during the incident. He said everyone is the compound was safe, and that most employees had left for the day before the protest began. No injuries were reported among the demonstrators.

    Many of those in the crowd were Salafis, members of an ultra-conservative strain of Islam.  Also on hand were hard-core football fans, known as Ultras, who were involved in the political protests that brought down the former government.

    According to the demonstrators the video that angered them was scheduled to be aired on Tuesday, the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States.  In Egypt, where about 10 percent of the population is Coptic, church leaders condemned the film.  The U.S. embassy also issued a statement, rejecting actions that “abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.”

    Protesters have attacked several foreign missions in Cairo over the past year, including the embassies of Israel, Saudi Arabia and Germany for a variety of reasons.  Despite the incidents, security has been lightened in the Garden City neighborhood where the U.S. and other embassies are located, with long-standing checkpoints dismantled.

    Anti-American sentiment has been on the rise since last year's revolution, while perceived insults to the Prophet Mohamed have sparked demonstrations across the region over the last several years.

    You May Like

    Top US General: Turkish Media Report ‘Absurd'

    General Dunford rejects ‘irresponsible' claims of coup involvement by former four-star Army General Campbell, who led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring earlier this year

    Video Saving Ethiopian Children Thought to Be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at efforts of one African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children

    Protests Over Western Troops Threaten Libyan 'Unity' Government

    Fears mount that Islamist foes of ‘unity' government plan to declare a revolutionaries' council in Tripoli

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    September 12, 2012 12:02 PM
    If the so-called anti-blasphemy laws are not abrogated or legislated against worldwide, freedom of religion and human rights of people will never be respected. No religion should superimpose itself against others. Everyone has right to his religion as well as the right to show what's wrong in the other religion(s). In the absence of this, people will be locked in darkness for ages which lopsided education in the islamic countries cannot dislodge. When is the world ever going to be free from the threat that islam poses? Who is going to be the voice of oppressed peoples of the world to speak out against this crime against humanity? An anti-people religion that pins out a people for hate is a crime against humanity. The solution to this problem is to make more prints of the Satanic Verses, the cartoons and lately this beautiful film so that there be total unrest in satan's enclave daily until all his children are tired and hands-down.

    by: Wayne from: Kansas City
    September 11, 2012 6:59 PM
    So what's the name of the film so I can exercise my freedom to decide for myself?

    by: Greg from: Tulsa
    September 11, 2012 6:44 PM
    I am not sure about this but I thought that land attached to an embassy was US soil. IF that really is true then this was another attack on Americans.....Naturally we won't do anything becasuse that would not be PC. Come on liberals I KNOW you are just dying to comment, not serve our country in any meaningful way, but you will comment....

    by: clarke from: Texas
    September 11, 2012 6:19 PM
    They dont seem very consirned about our Christian beliefs. They also "attacked" an American instalation and destroyed an American Flag... Not a window or a water fountain, a flag. Im not sure of what the legal stance of a flag is, but I know it was the 1st thing we did when we got to the Moon, and its been a major symbol in human history for every civilization. To desicrate that on any day, with any flag is unacceptable. To do it to an American flag on 9/11 is a clear indication that we will never get along. I have nothing more to give, and will not waste another second trying to help or listening to anyone trying to help with all the issues in the Middle East.

    by: martha d hadaway from: myrtle beach, sc
    September 11, 2012 5:49 PM
    Why do we give aid to these countries they hate us and take our money. Why were they allowed to scale the wall in the first place!!

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora