Times Online – January 13, 2009
Iranian demonstrators burned photographs of Barack Obama today as they protested against America’s inaction over Gaza.
Dozens of people gathered in Tehran waving Palestinian flags and defacing and setting fire to images of the President-elect.
Iranian demonstrators have often burned effigies or pictures of US presidents in the past but this appeared to be the first time Mr Obama’s picture had been defaced, a week before his inauguration as president.
The Iranian government has condemned the West, and the United States in particular, for not doing more to stop Israel’s attacks on Gaza. The 17-day-old offensive, which Israel says is to stop rockets being fired at it, has killed more than 900 Palestinians.
“Where are the freedom seekers?” read one poster held up by a demonstrator today protest. It had the word “Gaza” emblazoned on it and an image of a weeping Palestinian.
The demonstrators, waving Palestinian flags, some chanting “Death to Obama”, had gathered outside the Swiss embassy which handles US interests because Tehran and Washington have not had diplomatic ties for nearly three decades.
Pictures showed the president-elect’s image laid on the road for cars to drive over it and other images showed demonstrators burning an Obama poster.
In other recent protests against Israel’s Gaza offensive, demonstrators have climbed into a British diplomatic compound and gathered outside the missions of Jordan and Egypt, which have peace treaties with Israel, to condemn what they see as the inadequate international response.
Last updated 16/01/2009