American missions have been attacked in three Arab nations-- Yemen, Egypt and Libya. The spreading violence comes as outrage grows over an obscure movie made in the United States called "Innocence of Muslims" that mocked Islam's Prophet Muhammad.Crowds protesting at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo the on Tuesday climbed its walls and tore down an American flag, which they replaced briefly with a black, Islamist flag. The protests continued Thursday, with protesters clashing with police near the U.S. mission.Protesters in Yemen, meanwhile, stormed the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa.
Officials on Thursday were investigating whether the attack in Libya was a backlash to the video or a plot to coincide with the anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. [34 photos total]

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An Egyptian protester throws back a tear gas canister toward riot police, unseen, during clashes outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. Protesters clashed with police near the U.S. Embassy in Cairo for the third day in a row. Police used tear gas to disperse the demonstrators and the two sides pelted each other with rocks. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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An Egyptian protester throws back a tear gas canister toward riot police, unseen, outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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An Egyptian police officer shoots a tear gas canister toward protesters, unseen, during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian police fire tear gas at protesters during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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A disabled Egyptian protester throws a gas canister away during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian protesters throw stones toward riot police, unseen, during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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A protestor throws rocks at riot police in Cairo, Egypt on Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012, as violence continues in Cairo for a third day as anger spreads across the Muslim world against an anti-Islam film. (ZUMA24.com / Amanda Mustard) #
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Egyptian protesters carry an injured man during clashes with riot police, unseen, near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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An Egyptian protester stands in front of the riot police during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian protesters throw stones toward riot police, background, during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian riot police throw stones at protesters during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian protesters throw stones next to a burning police car during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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Egyptian protesters throw stones at a riot police armored vehicle that was hit by a fire bomb during clashes outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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An Egyptian protester stands on top of a burning police car during clashes near the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Khalil Hamra) #
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A policeman stands in front of a police car set on fire by protesters in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, during clashes between protesters and police earlyThursday, Sept. 13, 2012, as part of widespread anger across the Muslim world about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad. (AP / Ahmed Gomaa) #
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A riot policeman passes a burning vehicle during clashes outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, early Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012, as part of widespread anger across the Muslim world about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad. (AP / Hussein Talal) #
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Yemeni protestors climb the gate of the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. Dozens of protesters gather in front of the US Embassy in Sanaa to protest against the American film "The Innocence of Muslims" deemed blasphemous and Islamophobic. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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Yemeni protestors break a door of the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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Yemeni protestors break a widow of the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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A protestor reacts from tear gas firied by riot police, unseen, near the U.S. Embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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A Yemeni protestor, left, holds a white flag with Islamic inscription in Arabic that reads, "No God but Allah, and Mohammed is his prophet," in front of the U.S. embassy during a protest about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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Police, unseen, use water cannons to disperse protesters near the U.S. Embassy during a demonstration about a film ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad, in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Hani Mohammed) #
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A burnt car in front of U.S. consulate, after an attack that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens on the night of Tuesday, in Benghazi, Libya, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. (AP / Mohammad Hannon) #
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A Libyan man investigates the inside of the U.S. Consulate, after an attack that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens on the night of Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012, in Benghazi, Libya, (AP / Mohammad Hannon) #
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Libyans walk on the grounds of the gutted U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, after an attack that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP / Ibrahim Alaguri) #
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A man looks at documents at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, after an attack that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. The graffiti reads, "no God but God," " God is great," and "Muhammad is the Prophet." (AP / Ibrahim Alaguri) #
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Egyptian soldiers stand guard in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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Egyptian protesters carry their national flag and a flag with Arabic that reads "No God but Allah, and Mohammed is his prophet," and chant anti U.S. slogans during a demonstration in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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Egyptians continue protesting an anti-Islamic film for a second day outside of the US Embassy in Cairo, Egypt on Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012. (ZUMA24.com / Amanda Mustard) #
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A man shouts slogans condemning an alleged U.S.-made movie that insults the Prophet Mohammed, in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Sept. 12, 2012. (MCT / Li Muzi) #
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Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. (AP / Mohammed Abu Zaid) #
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Egyptian protesters climb the walls of the U.S. embassy with Arabic graffiti that reads "any one but you God's prophet" during a protest in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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Egyptian protesters climb the walls of the U.S. embassy while others chant anti U.S. slogans during a protest in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. (AP / Nasser Nasser) #
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Protesters chant slogans outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. (AP / Mohammed Abu Zaid) #

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