Just as President Donald Trump issued his controversial declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, the State Department told its citizens around the world to exercise vigilance in response to concerns about terrorism and civil unrest.
“U.S. citizens abroad are urged to monitor the local news and maintain contact with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate,” the State Department, according to The Hill, said on Wednesday. While the Trump administration and Israel's prime minister framed the decision as a step toward peace, Arab leaders warned it could have disastrous consequences for regional stability.
While it's unclear what the long-term effects will be, Bethlehem saw violent protests that included Palestinians throwing rocks at Israeli troops shortly after Trump's announcement, the Daily Mail reported.
According to the Mail, protests erupted in Gaza as well:
Spontaneous protests broke out in Gaza overnight, with angry youths burning tires, American and Israeli flags and Trump posters. The Israeli military said it would deploy several battalions to the West Bank ahead of Friday, while other troops have been put on alert to address 'possible developments.'
The front page of one of Lebanon's papers declared “Death to America” and the Palestinian militant group Hamas called for an uprising to make Trump “regret” his decision, The Hill reported.
“The American decision is an aggression on our people and a war on our sanctuaries,” Ismail Haniyeh, the group's leader, said on Thursday.