KARACHI - Police on Sunday used tear-gas and batons to disperse hundreds of angry protesters rallying against Israel's military offensive in the Gaza Strip when they tried to march on US Consulate. About 2,000 people had answered the call of ISO and other parties to protest the Jewish state's campaign in the Palestinian territory, torching Israeli and US flags. They briefly turned violent when several hundred protesters deviated from the planned route and started heading toward the US Consulate in the city. When police tried to stop the demonstrators, they were pelted with stones. Some protesters even started fistfights with officers, prompting police to fire tear-gas shells and baton-charge the crowd. Shia leaders used loudspeakers to urge the protesters to disperse without further incident and the situation was quickly brought under control. Thousands of children attended the rally wearing the army dress and carrying toy guns chanting the slogans against Israel. They are carrying the flags of Hezbollah and Hamas and pasted the pictures of Hassan Nasarullah on their shirts. The participants of Difa-e-Gaza rally included thousands of women with their children and infants to show solidarity and attachment with the innocent Palestinian people. "We have not arrested anyone," said city police chief Wasim Ahmed. All roads leading to the US Consulate were nevertheless sealed off as a security precaution. Demonstrations to express solidarity and support for the Palestinians were staged in several major cities in Pakistan on Sunday. , with about 2,000 turning out in Islamabad and several hundred more in Lahore. Several small demonstrations took place in Lahore, with more than 400 people taking part in the main procession along Mall Road, chanting anti-Israel and anti-US slogans before dispersing peacefully. Meanwhile, various political and religious organizations staged a protest rally against Israeli aggression and called for immediate ceasefire in Gaza. Pakistani Awami Tehrik (PAT) and Tehreek-e-Menhaj-ul-Quran took out a rally from Fountain Chowk to the Karachi Press Club. A large number of women and children too took part in the demonstration. The protestors were holding placards and banners inscribed with anti-Israeli slogans. PAT President Dr S M Zameer, Ali Ausat Shah, Mahmood Qadri and other leaders participated in the rally. In another protest demonstration, activists and leaders of the Awami Muslim League (AML) gathered outside the press club and chanted slogans against Israel and US. Addressing the participants, speakers urged unity among Muslim nations and appealed to boycott Israel products. The protestors torched the effigy of US President and the Israeli flag. "Muslim rulers must take serious note of the double standards of the West," the secretary general of Jamaat-i-Islami, Munawar Hussain, told protesters. "The US, Britain and some other European countries raised a hue and cry over the Mumbai attacks but surprisingly the world is watching the killings of innocent women and children in Gaza as silent spectators."