Eleven Lebanese protesters were arrested on charges of destruction of property yesterday after an unsuccessful attempt to occupy the Syrian Embassy at 2215 Wyoming Ave, NW.
Shortly after the arrests, two other demonstrators were arrested near the chancery on charges of disorderly conduct.
The protesters were part of a group of 150 demonstrators belonging to the American Lebanese League who picketed all day yesterday in front of the White House. Two group was protesting Lebanese casualties that resulted from recent fighting between Syrian troops and Lebanese Christian militiamen in Beirut.
Shortly after 2 p.m. yesterday, nine Lebanese men and two Lebanese women entered the Syrian Embassy on the pretext of applying for visas. Once inside, the protesters began emptying file drawers, tearing pictures off walls and scattering papers around the offices, police said.
Officials said Secret Service agents and uniformed D.C. officers forcibly removed the demonstrators from the chancery, they were booked by D.C. police at 2nd district headquarters on charges of destruction of property. The protesters are scheduled to appear before a U.S. magistrate this morning.
After the arrests, the main body of Lebanese demonstrators marched from the White House up Connecticut Avenue NW toward the Syrian Embassy but were stopped by a police barricade a block from the embassy.
The two arrests on disorderly conduct charges were made at the blockade at Connecticut and Wyoming avenues. They were also booked at 2nd District headquarters, officials said.
After the arrests, the Lebanese demonstrators marched back down Connecticut Avenue to the White House. About 50 protesters picketed there into the late evening.