PARIS - The conflict between Israel and Hamas militants is making a global impact with Britain, Canada, France and Germany among nations stepping up security around potential Jewish targets and pro-Palestinian demonstrations erupting in cities across the world.
- Britain -
Police in London said Sunday they had boosted patrols following the Hamas attack.
"We are aware of a number of incidents... in relation to the ongoing conflict in Israel and the border with Gaza," the Metropolitan Police said on social media.
Interior minister Suella Braverman warned of "zero tolerance for anti-Semitism or glorification of terrorism on the streets of Britain".
"I expect the police to use the full force of the law against displays of support for Hamas, other proscribed terrorist groups or attempts to intimidate British Jews," Braverman wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
- United States -
Several cities across the country, including New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Houston, stepped up security around synagogues.
Around a thousand demonstrators gathered in New York's Manhattan on Sunday in solidarity with Palestinians as a couple of hundred pro-Israel marchers counter-protested.
New York's Governor Kathy Hochul called the Palestinian solidarity rally "abhorrent and morally repugnant", and ordered landmarks in the state -- including the World Trade Center and Niagara Falls -- to be illuminated in blue and white.
- Canada -
Rallies in support of the Palestinian people were held in Montreal, where demonstrators held "free Palestine" posters, waved Palestinian flags and called for boycotting Israel, images on TV showed.
Police in the capital Ottawa announced an increased presence at sensitive religious areas, including synagogues and mosques.
"We are also reaching out to community partners to ensure they know we are here to support them," a statement said. "Hate Crimes will not be tolerated and will be fully investigated."
- France -
The French government focused on synagogues and Jewish schools in cities across the country.
Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin sent an urgent message to regional officials to reinforce surveillance and called for the use of soldiers from France's Operation Sentinelle, a force deployed across the country since the 2015 terror attacks.
"At a time when terrorist attacks from Gaza are hitting Israel, I ask you to immediately step up vigilance, security and protection of Jewish community sites in France," he wrote in the message seen by AFP.
France's Jewish population, estimated at over 500,000, is the largest in Europe and the third-biggest in the world, after Israel and the United States.
A government spokesperson said a pro-Palestinian rally scheduled for Monday evening in Lyon would be banned due to the "risk of disturbing public order".
- Germany -
Berlin boosted police protection of Jewish and Israeli institutions, while some Palestinian supporters took to the streets of the capital to celebrate the attack.
"In Berlin, police protection has been immediately stepped up," Interior Minister Nancy Faeser told Bild newspaper.
"The federal government and the regions are closely coordinating their actions."
Authorities were also closely watching "potential supporters of Hamas in the Islamist sphere", she added.
Berlin police posted photos on social media showing "people celebrating the attacks on Israel by passing out pastries".
- Iran -
Hundreds of people gathered on Saturday in major cities including on Tehran's Palestine Square, carrying Palestinian flags.
Billboards celebrating the offensive Hamas has dubbed "Al-Aqsa Flood" were put up in the capital, including one declaring: "The great liberation operation has begun."
Crowds in some cities set off fireworks and torched Israeli flags.
Others marched in Palestinian colours while motorists honked their horns in jubilation.
- Lebanon -
The Iran-backed Shiite movement Hezbollah staged a rally Sunday in Beirut amid chants of "Death to Israel".
Hezbollah said it had fired on Israeli positions in the contested Shebaa Farms border area, "in solidarity" with Hamas.
Senior Hezbollah official Hashem Safieddine said the strikes were a message to Israel that "it's our right and duty to target the enemy so long as it occupies our land".
- Turkey -
Thousands of Turks joined a march in Istanbul to back the Palestinians.
"The Palestinian people are only defending their homeland, it has nothing to do with terrorism," said 54-year-old Sahin Ocal, a member of one of the associations that organised the protest.
- Yemen -
Demonstrators burned Israeli and US flags during a protest in the capital Sanaa, which is controlled by the Huthi militia, backed by Iran.
Militia members on the streets shouted "Death to America, Death to Israel".
- Iraq -
A pro-Palestinian demonstration was called in the holy Shiite city of Kerbala Sunday.
About 100 people had gathered in the heart of the capital Baghdad on Saturday to celebrate the Hamas assault. They stamped on and set fire to Israeli flags chanting "No to America, No to Israel".
- South Africa -
Several hundred members of the Muslim community in Cape Town gathered at the Al Quds mosque in solidarity with Palestinians.
"South Africa's liberation movement "was also forced... to take up arms to have an impact" said Shaykh Shahid Esau, a former member of the South African parliament.
During the apartheid era, "the world community was called on to have sanctions against South Africa and we find the very same Western countries that supported South Africa during the apartheid regime...they are the very same people that are now supporting Israel against the Palestinian people," he added.