Thousands attend pro-Palestinian march in Manchester

people at demo
A rally was held outside Manchester Central Library

Thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters have marched again in Manchester, calling for an end to Israeli attacks in Gaza.

It is the fourth weekend that rallies have been held in the city and elsewhere since war began on 7 October.

About 1,400 people were killed and more than 200 people taken hostage after Hamas attacks in Israel.

Since then 9,000 people have been killed by Israeli bombs in Gaza, Palestinian officials say.

Demonstrators repeated their calls for a ceasefire and an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.

Earlier in the day, the North West Friends of Israel group held a vigil for the hostages taken in the Hamas attacks on 7 October.

They set up heart-shaped balloons attached to the hostages' names and photos in Manchester's Exchange Square.

heart balloons at vigil in Manchester
Heart-shaped balloons were set up for Israeli hostages

Before last weekend's demonstration, Greater Manchester Police described previous events, which also drew thousands, as "generally peaceful".

Following large pro-Palestinian demonstrations nationwide, Home Secretary Suella Braverman said they were "hate marches".

However, she drew criticism from human rights campaigners, including the group Liberty, which described her comments as "inflammatory and dangerous".

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