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War on Gaza: Jordanian police fire tear gas at protesters near Israel embassy

Jordanian authorities say they allow protests but not ones that try to reach Israel's embassy or border zones
Members of the Jordanian Gendarmerie and police take position to prevent demonstrators that make their way towards the Israeli embassy in Amman, Jordan on 24 March (Reuters/Jehad Shelbak)

Jordanian police fired tear gas at hundreds of demonstrators marching towards the Israeli embassy in Amman on Sunday, in protest at Israel's latest storming of hospitals and the mounting civilian death toll in Gaza.

Authorities had earlier deployed riot police to disperse demonstrators gathered in the Kaloti mosque in the capital who were planning to march on the heavily fortified Israeli embassy nearby.

Several protesters were beaten and several arrested as they tried to break a heavy police cordon around the embassy, witnesses said.

Police were not immediately available for comment.

They chanted "No Zionist embassy on Jordanian land", in one of the slogans that have become customary at protests that call on Jordan to scrap its unpopular peace treaty with Israel that often prompt accusations of betrayal.

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The Israeli embassy, where protesters gather daily, has long been a flashpoint of anti-Israel protests at times of turmoil in Gaza and the occupied Palestinian territories.

The kingdom has witnessed some of the biggest peaceful rallies across the region as anti-Israel passions run high over the carnage in Gaza.

Translation: Local sources: Jordanian authorities prevent demonstrators from reaching the [Israeli] embassy. A massive march near the occupation embassy in Amman; Condemning the crimes of the occupation in Gaza.

Jordanian authorities allow protests but say they cannot tolerate any attempt to storm the embassy, instigate civic unrest or try to reach a border zone with the Israeli occupied West Bank or Israel.

They have arrested hundreds of activists and protesters they say have broken the law since 7 October.

More than 32,000 Palestinians have been killed since the start of Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip, according to local health authorities.

At least half of Jordan's 12 million citizens are of Palestinian origin, they or their parents having been expelled or fled to Jordan during the violence that facilitated Israel's creation in 1948. 

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