Protesters calling for cease-fire in Israel-Hamas war block traffic in Seattle
Jan 6, 2024, 4:36 PM
SEATTLE (AP) — Protesters calling for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war blocked northbound traffic on Interstate 5 in Seattle on Saturday.
Additional demonstrators on a nearby overpass cheered in support of the blockade, which began around 1:15 p.m., the Seattle Times reported. The state transportation department on X said traffic at one point was backed up more than 6 miles (9.7 kilometers), and the agency asked drivers to use alternate routes.
Demonstrators chanted “free, free Palestine” and “hey hey, ho ho, the occupation has got to go.”
Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel killed around 1,200 people, and some 250 others were taken hostage. It was the worst such attack in Israel’s history.
Since then the Health Ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said Saturday a total of 22,722 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s subsequent assault. The count does not differentiate between combatants and civilians.
Israel has held Hamas responsible for civilian casualties, saying the group embeds itself within Gaza’s civilian infrastructure. Still, international criticism of Israel’s conduct has grown because of the rising civilian death toll.