TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Several Palestinian protesters burned a photo of Mike Pence Sunday night at a small demonstration in the West Bank city of Bethlehem against his arrival in Israel earlier in the day
The protesters gathered in Bethlehem’s Manger Square outside the Church of the Nativity in a largely symbolic show of anger at Pence’s two-day trip to Israel, according to AFP.
The visit, part of a wider tour of Middle Eastern countries, comes amid simmering Palestinian anger at US President Donald Trump’s December recognition of Jerusalem (al-Quds) as the capital of Israel.
Holding signs reading “Pence you are desecrating our land” and “Pence go home,” the protesters at one point burned a large photo of the US vice president, cheering and waving Palestinian flags as it burned on the ground.
Pence and his wife Karen arrived at Ben Gurion airport Tuesday afternoon. His trip had been scheduled to include a visit to Bethlehem, but the Palestinian Authority is boycotting his visit, so the West Bank itinerary was canceled.
Initially scheduled for December before being postponed, Pence’s visit is the final leg of a trip that included stops in Egypt and Jordan as well as a visit earlier in the day to a US military facility near the Syrian border.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Pence in a Facebook post, and later at an event for foreign diplomats, hailing the US vice president as a “great friend of Israel.”