KHARTOUM -- Hundreds of protesters breached the wall of the U.S. Embassy in Sudan's capital on Friday, raising a black Islamist flag after breaking through a protective phalanx of police firing tear gas and rubber bullets.
U.S. embassy officials in Khartoum said late Friday that police had finally dispersed the protesters. They said protesters didn’t succeeding in tearing down the U.S. flag.
An eyewitness told The Times three protesters blockading a road near the U.S embassy were killed by police. The attack followed earlier riots by thousands of protesters Friday at the German and British embassies.
A furious mob stormed the German embassy, broke in and set it on fire. The protests were led by hardliner Altayeb Mustafa, an uncle of Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir.
Sudanese Islamic scholars had Thursday called on Sudanese people to protest “peacefully but with strength” to defend the prophet Muhammad, who was mocked in the trailer for a film produced in the United States that was uploaded on the Internet recently. The images have led to a series of protests outside U.S. embassies across Northern Africa and in Muslim-dominated nations elsewhere.
Germany’s Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said in a televised address that German staffers were safe, news agencies reported. The protesters tore down the German flag and hoisted a black Islamic flag in its place.
Westerwelle said the film was “disgraceful” but that didn’t justify attacking embassies and endangering human lives. Although the film has been strongly condemned by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as “disgusting and reprehensible,” protests at U.S. and Western embassies erupted in Sudan, Egypt, Tunisia, Lebanon, Yemen, Iran and other Muslim countries after the end of noon prayers Friday.
--Robyn Dixon and a special correspondent