Following violent anti-Israel clashes on Sunday in Paris in which hundreds of Jews were trapped in a synagogue, a video has emerged showing what appears to be pro-Israel demonstrators tearing through the street in front of the shul, carrying sticks, and throwing tables and chairs in the direction of pro-Palestinian protesters.
The protests took place on the sixth day of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza following continued rocket fire into Israel.
In the video, titled “Pro-Israel demonstrators break everything in sight in front of the synagogue on rue de La Roquette” and uploaded to YouTube on Monday, protesters can be seen advancing toward the pro-Palestinian demonstrators, picking up chairs and tables from nearby restaurants and throwing them to the ground, and upending garbage cans.
At one point, the protesters can be heard chanting “Palestine, on t’encule,” which loosely translates to “Palestine, we fuck you.”
The competing demonstrations then erupt in violence as the pro-Palestinian demonstrators, donning keffiyehs and waving Palestinian flags, surge, forcing the pro-Israel protesters to retreat.
One man is caught by the mob and can be seen violently bashed over the head with a helmet. Disoriented, he is then pushed to the ground and hit with a chair.
In the video, filmed seemingly from a nearby window or balcony, French riot police, coming from the other direction, can be seen advancing toward the anti-Israel demonstrators in formation, breaking up the clashes.
During the clashes on Sunday, which began as a calm protest, several thousand pro-Palestinian demonstrators walked through the streets behind a large banner that read “Total Support for the Struggle of the Palestinian People.” Later, protesters began throwing objects, eventually trapping the Jews in the synagogue.
The crowd, some very young, shouted slogans such as “We Are All Palestinians!” and “Only One Solution, End the Occupation!”
According to reports, the protesters also threw bricks and stones at the building, with one person describing the incident “like at was an intifada,” according to Channel 2. The people were able to exit the synagogue only after several hours, according to the French Jewish Defense League, a far-right group.
Some commenters on the YouTube video claimed that the behavior of the Jewish demonstrators riled up the pro-Palestinian mob and provoked it to violence. The Times of Israel could not independently confirm the chronology of the events, although it appeared that the clip was filmed before the Jews were trapped in the synagogue.
The incident was roundly condemned by French officials.