Yemen protester shot dead by police outside US embassy: security official
SANAA - Agence France-Presse
REUTERS PhotoA Yemen protester was shot to death by police outside US embassy, according to a security official.
Yemeni protesters on Thursday stormed the American embassy complex before being driven out by police, an AFP reporter said, as angry Muslim protests grew over a film mocking Islam.
All protesters who breached the fence of the US mission in Sanaa have been ejected, the correspondent reported, as security forces used water cannon and fired warning shots.
Police also fired warning shots earlier to disperse thousands of protesters as they approached the main gate of the mission.
"O, messenger of Allah... O, Mohammed!" demonstrators chanted.
The attack comes two days after four Americans including the ambassador were killed when a Libyan mob attacked the US consulate in Benghazi, and protesters in Cairo tore down the Stars and Stripes and replaced it with a black Islamic flag.
500 protest in Tehran over anti-Islam film
Up to 500 people also protested in Tehran on Thursday, chanting "Death to America!" and death to the movie's director, an AFP photographer at the scene said.
The rally, near the Swiss embassy that handles US interests in the absence of US-Iran diplomatic ties, ended peacefully two hours later.
Hundreds of police and security personnel had prevented the crowd from approaching the Swiss compound, which had been evacuated by diplomats as a precaution.
An American flag was seen burned during the demonstration.
Several protesters carried Egyptian and Libyan flags in support of Muslims in those countries where violent protests against the film occurred on Tuesday.
Iranian news agencies said the demonstration was called by the Student Islamic Society, a hardline university group loyal to supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that has held anti-Western rallies in the past.
In the Libya protest on Tuesday at the US consulate in the city of Benghazi, a US ambassador and three other US officials were killed.
"The killing of the American ambassador in Libya in protest over insults against the prophet of Islam is an example of Muslim hatred against the repulsive policies (of the United States), which are aligned with Islamophobia," foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency.
Washington is investigating to see whether the Libya assault was organised by militant groups to coincide with the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks.
However, much attention is focused on the anti-Islam film said to have prompted the protests in Libya and Egypt.
The low-budget amateur film ridicules the Prophet Mohammed by associating him with sex and themes of paedophilia and homosexuality.
It is an offence under Islam to depict Mohammed in any way, and Danish cartoons of the prophet in 2005 sparked violent protests in several countries.
US media initially cited someone claiming to be an American-Israeli calling himself Sam Bacile as saying he made the film on a $5 million budget with the help of 100 Jews, but no record of such a person has been found.
US President Barack Obama, in a telephone call to Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi on Wednesday, said he "rejects efforts to denigrate Islam, but underscored that there is never any justification for violence against innocents and acts that endanger American personnel and facilities." Iranian parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani responded by saying: "Obama's comments that he respects the Muslim culture is a big and bold lie. The Americans and the Zionists do not tolerate other religions and cultures." Western embassies in Iran maintain a high level of vigilance over any protests.
Canada last week closed its mission, citing concern over the safety of its diplomats.
In November last year, the British embassy was stormed and ransacked during a state-organised demonstration, prompting London to close that mission and order Iran's diplomats out of Britain.
In 1979, in the wake of Iran's Islamic revolution, protesters overran the US embassy in Tehran, taking 52 diplomats and other Americans hostage for 444 days. That incident led to the rupture of Iran-US ties.