Los Angeles

Thousands of pro-Palestine protesters block downtown LA streets to call for ceasefire


Thousands of protesters flocked to the streets of downtown Los Angeles on Saturday in support of Palestine, calling for a ceasefire in Gaza days after Israeli troops fired at a crowd of Palestinians who were seeking food from an aid convoy.

Marching along downtown’s busiest streets, protesters carried flags, signs and a large banner that had the names of Palestinians who’ve been killed in the conflict. An organizer for Saturday’s protest told NBC4 the demonstrators shut down Spring Street to demand attention on the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

“Tens of thousands of people who turned out here today are sending a very clear message that we will not accept this as normal and that we are committed to fighting against genocide,” said Ahmad Hasan of the Palestinian Youth Movement.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decried the International Court of Justice’s accusations of genocide as “outrageous” in January.

Officials in Gaza said more than 100 people were killed as aid trucks entered the city and people rushed toward the vehicles.

On Thursday, Israeli troops opened fire on Palestinians who sought food from an aid convoy in Gaza. According to the Health Ministry in Gaza, 115 people were killed in the chaos. Israel claims troops fired when they felt endangered by the crowd, and the majority of the deceased were trampled in a stampede for the food.

The attack at the aid truck increased the death toll in the Israel-Hamas war to 30,000.

In response, President Joe Biden announced the U.S. would air-drop food to starving residents. On Saturday, U.S. military C-130 cargo planes dropped Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) over Gaza.

Five people were arrested Saturday during the downtown Los Angeles protest. Officers were seen documenting vandalism in connection with the movement.


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