Qana protesters break into UN building in Beirut

Demonstrators burn UN and American flags and damage offices.

beirut protest 298.88 (photo credit: AP)
beirut protest 298.88
(photo credit: AP)
Protesters angry over the IAF strike that killed more than 50 people in Qana Sunday morning broke into the main UN building in Beirut on Sunday, burning UN and American flags and damaging some offices. Around 5,000 protesters massed outside the empty building and chanted anti-American and anti-Israeli slogans. Dozens of angry demonstrators, carrying yellow Hizbullah flags and chanting "we are all resistance," climbed over the two-meter high fence outside the UN office in downtown Beirut. They then broke glass and burnt a UN flag. A few protesters managed to break into the building and damage some of its offices. Two Hizbullah members of parliament urged the demonstrators through loudspeakers not to attack the offices. Shortly afterward, dozens of Lebanese soldiers arrived at the scene, cordoned off the building, and prevented people from getting close. Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri urged demonstrators to stop the riots through a local television station saying "I know you are angry, but I appeal to you to go home. This is not in our interest politically." Demonstrators chased Interior Minister Ahmed Fatfat as he walked from the UN building to nearby government offices, but they did not manage to reach him once his body guards surrounded him. His car was slightly damaged.