US officials overseeing preparations for next week’s visit to Israel by President Barack Obama were alarmed to see that hundreds of American flags displayed along the main highway approaching Jerusalem were suspended upside down.

The flags, hanging from poles attached to streetlamps along the road, had the stars toward the base of the flag pole, Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Thursday.

Workers raised thousands of flags on streetlamps in and around the capital along routes that the president will take during his three-day visit, which begins on Wednesday next week.

A Jerusalem Municipality official in charge of maintenance explained that the stitching on the flags was in the wrong place, allowing them to be attached to the poles only the wrong way up.

The flags were provided to the municipality by the Foreign Ministry, which hastily ordered new flags to correct the embarrassing error in time for the presidential visit.