Pro-Palestinian group in Paterson calls for end to Israel-Hamas violence

Anthony Johnson Image
Monday, October 9, 2023
Pro-Palestinian group in NJ calls for end to Israel-Hamas violence
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A pro-Palestinian group in Paterson, new Jersey is calling for an end to the violence between Israel and Hamas. Anthony Johnson has the latest.

PATERSON, New Jersey (WABC) -- A pro-Palestinian group is calling for an end to the violence between Israel and Hamas.

There is fear on both sides and it is having a direct impact on communities in North Jersey. There is also a lot of blame to go around, but everyone is worried about the impact the bombs are having on the civilian populations.

The war on the ground and in the air has forced Israelis into bomb shelters and folks on the Gaza Strip to shelter anywhere they can. The death toll is rising and far too many civilians are the victims.

"Violence of any form must be denounced and tragically lives are being lost and the status quo in that region is both unsustainable and unacceptable," said Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh.

On Main Street in Paterson, there is an area called Palestinian Way in a city that boasts the largest Palestinian population in the country.

"What happened is wrong, should not happen again, I think the solution of the problem is stop the occupation immediately," said Dr. Samir Zaina.

They say the last few days have produced tension, anxiety and resentment because they believe their side of the story has not been told.

"We just want people to pay attention and to look at the larger context of the Palestinians being killed, not only today and the last few days, but over this entire occupation," said Palestinian American Basna Bsharat.

And there are Jewish Americans who are caught on the conflict. Teaneck Deputy Mayor Elie Katz was leading a tour group with his family when the bombs started flying over Israel.

"There's thousands of Americans that are here that are stranded, for a lack of better words, that do not want to be in the middle of a war zone, and are trying to get back to the United States," Katz said.

On Monday afternoon, a group of Palestinians and their supports are planning a rally in Gould Park to get their message out that the Palestinian people have been suffering for decades and show solidarity.

"It's definitely a terrible situation and the worst part is it seems like it's endless, this is not the first war against Gaza, this is the fifth war," said pharmacist Dr. Amjad Abukwaik.

RELATED | New Yorkers, officials return from Israel shocked but safe

For one New York family, surviving the Hamas-Israeli conflict meant waiting hours inside a bomb shelter, hearing the blasts go off around them. Lucy Yang has more.


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