AIPAC Conference on Lockdown, Delegates Instructed to Remain Indoors as Anti-Israel Protesters Gather Outside
This year’s annual American Israel Public Affairs (AIPAC) policy conference kicked off amid tight security on Sunday, with delegates instructed to remain indoors and bomb-sniffing dogs scouring the premises.
The two Washington, DC venues at which the 2016 conference is being held – the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and the Verizon Building – were both basically on lockdown, as delegates awaited Sunday’s speech by US Vice President Joe Biden and Monday’s by Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton, and due to anti-Israel protests outside.
A volunteer for the PR group Scott Circle told an Algemeiner reporter on the scene that the entire Verizon Building had been swept by US Secret Service for explosives prior to the arrival of the tightly guarded speakers, and that anyone requesting to leave the building required a special escort to do so.
Protesters chanting anti-Israel and anti-AIPAC slogans, waving Palestinian flags and carrying signs saying “Free free Palestine” and “Boycott Israel” swarmed the outside of the Convention Center.