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Palestinian protesters mob French FM in Gaza

A crowd of Palestinian protesters mobbed the car of French Foreign Minister Michele Alliot-Marie as she toured the Gaza Strip today, witnesses said.

world Updated: Jan 21, 2011 16:03 IST

A crowd of Palestinian protesters mobbed the car of French Foreign Minister Michele Alliot-Marie as she toured the Gaza Strip on Friday, witnesses said.

Dozens of angry Palestinians blocked her jeep, banging their fists on the bonnet and shouting "Get out of Gaza!" as she arrived in the territory, which is controlled by the Hamas.

Demonstrators later pelted her vehicle with eggs and threw shoes at the windscreen as she tried to leave a hospital that she had just visited. Locals said the protesters were relatives of Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons.

They were furious over remarks attributed to Alliot-Marie on Thursday, when she visited the parents of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who is still missing after being abducted by fighters from Hamas and other militant factions in 2006.

Alliot-Marie was quoted by some media as calling the detention of Shalit a "war crime". Locals were angry that she did not apparently refer to the Palestinians in Israeli jails. Hamas has demanded the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners in return for handing back Shalit.