The violence has erupted after gangs of pro-Palestinian reportedly drove through the largely Jewish neighbourhoods of La Cienega and Beverly Hills in the US city of Los Angeles. The gang is believed to have begun hurling abuse and objects at Jewish people sitting at restaurants and walking the streets. It comes as tensions in the Middle East worsen as Israel and militants in Gaza continue to clash amid hopes of a ceasefire.
CBS 2 correspondent Kara Finnstrom told the network on Thursday that LA police were now investigating the incidents which took place on Wednesday night as “potential hate crimes.”
The reporter said: “Video which was posted on social media shows what police are calling a brawl or a fight right outside the restaurant.
“They say the suspects who attacked the patrons of the restaurant were all dressed in black and we reportedly part of a caravan”
It comes as one diner told local LA news outlet California Globe that several cars had driven through West Hollywood flying Palestinian flags and shouting abuse at passersby.
He said: “Suddenly I see glass flying at us.
“Suddenly a few guys from the cars started running toward me, then 15-20 guys were running at us.
“They see I am Arabic, but then a big guy jumps at me and hits me. I hit back.”
Labour’s Sir Keir Starmer also issued a strong condemnation saying: “Anti-Semitism, misogyny and hate have no place on our streets or in our society.
“There must be consequences.”
Meanwhile, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick told the House of Commons there had been a 320 percent increase in reports of anti-Semitic incidents since the start of the latest Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Mr Jenrick said: “We must ensure this is a country in which our Jewish friends and neighbours feel safe.”