A demonstration against City Councilmember Kalman Yeger's recent anti-Palestine statements devolved into a tense standoff on Thursday, as hundreds of supporters of the Brooklyn rep clashed with a few dozen protesters calling for his resignation.

Held outside Yeger's Brooklyn office, the dueling rallies came one day after the new councilmember touched off a firestorm by repeatedly tweeting that "Palestine does not exist." The comments received near universal condemnation from his colleagues in the city council, and Mayor Bill de Blasio is now calling for Yeger to be stripped of his post on the Immigration Committee.

But the controversial tweets prompted a different sort of reception in Borough Park. On Thursday evening, members of the ultra-Orthodox community gathered to defend Yeger, with many of them echoing the anti-Palestine remarks and shouting pro-Israel slogans. The original protesters were vastly outnumbered, witnesses say, and had to be escorted from the scene by community affairs officers. At one point, a member of the counter-demonstration was heard asking a Palestinian child whether she was carrying a bomb.

Zainab Iqbal, a staff reporter at Bklyner.com, documented the chaotic event, even as members of the pro-Yeger camp harassed her with hateful rhetoric and questions. She said that some of the counterprotesters made her fear for her safety, and that the level of anti-Arab sentiment was something she'd not encountered in more than two decades of living in Brooklyn. On Friday morning, she described the scene to Gothamist:

"A whole bunch of people surrounded me and started talking about how Arabs murder people and Jewish people don't murder people. An older woman came up to me and started asking me if the Arabs are going to murder anyone today, like I was supposed to know the answer to that question...I was terrified. There was this fear in my stomach. After I encountered the people from the Jewish Defense League [an FBI-designated terrorist organization], I went to a wall and stood there trying to wrap my head around what was going on. Then I got back in the crowd and started asking questions — that's my job."

According to Iqbal, the most vocal member of the crowd was Dov Hikind, a former Brooklyn Assembly Member who now serves as chairman of the Coalition For a Positive America. Earlier in the day, Hikind had called for a counter-demonstration against "well-known antisemite Linda Sarsour," who he claimed was organizing the initial protest against Yeger.

But Sarsour says she had nothing to do with the event, and was attending a multicultural conference at the time of the protest. In a statement to Gothamist, Sarsour — who has been targeted by Hikind before — accused the former assemblyman of organizing a "hate fest."

For his part, Hikind took to Twitter following the protest to denounce the counterprotester who accused a child of carrying a bomb, while praising the "impressive" turnout from the Jewish community. "There's nothing worse at the end of an impressive & peaceful protest to discover that a participant said some rather nasty thing at some Muslim women and their young children," he wrote. "It is absolutely despicable to speak to and of a child that way let alone to her parents who come only to express their free speech."

In response, Sarsour accused Hikind of "doing nothing to deescalate" the situation, and instead choosing to stoke the Islamophobic rage of some counterprotesters.

"He can keep his empty condemnations because he continues to be one of the most hateful people in New York City," she said. "His hate won't win."

Gothamist's inquiries to Yeger and Hikind were not returned.