(Reuters) – A protester with a Palestinian flag self-immolated on Friday outside the Israeli consulate in Atlanta, injuring a security guard who attempted to intervene, authorities said.
The person, whom officials did not identify, is in critical condition, Police Chief Darin Schierbaum said at a news conference. The guard’s condition was not immediately clear.
“We believe this building remains safe, and we do not see any threat here,” the chief said. “We believe that was an act of extreme political protest.”
The protester arrived around 12:17 p.m. at the office building, which houses the consulate as well as several businesses, and used gasoline, police said.
The FBI’s Atlanta office said it was coordinating with local law enforcement. The consulate and the Israeli embassy in Washington did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Israel resumed its military offensive in Gaza on Friday after talks to extend a week-long truce collapsed.
Israel has vowed to annihilate Hamas after the militant group attacked southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing 1,200 people and taking 240 hostages, according to Israeli tallies.
More than 15,000 Gazans have been killed during Israel’s assault, Palestinian officials say, which has destroyed much of the enclave.
The conflict has prompted hundreds of protests and rallies across the U.S., both in support of Palestinians as well as Israelis.