Children lay teddies outside Foreign Office in protest for Gaza ceasefire

Hundreds of parents and children joined the protest on Friday demanding the UK government end arms sales to the Israeli state and for an immediate ceasefire.
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Dozens of children left teddy bears outside the gates of the Foreign Office as part of a protest for the government to call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Each toy represented a Palestinian child killed in the Israeli airstrikes on Gaza.

Hundreds of parents and children joined the protest on Friday (October 27) demanding the UK government end arms sales to the Israeli state and for an immediate ceasefire.

The demonstration came as 220 empty seats were set at a "Shabbat table" in north London to remember the hostages being held captive by Hamas after its attack on Israel, in which 1,400 people were killed.

According to figures released by the health ministry in Gaza, 2,913 children are among the 7,028 people who have been killed between October 7 and October 26.

A 212-page document includes their names, ages and identification numbers of 6,747 victims, while a further 281 Palestinians, including 248 children, are described as unidentified.

Young children bring teddy bears and other soft toys representing children killed in Gaza, to the gates of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development OfficeYoung children bring teddy bears and other soft toys representing children killed in Gaza, to the gates of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office
Young children bring teddy bears and other soft toys representing children killed in Gaza, to the gates of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

Kate Joseph of Parents for Palestine said: “We cannot imagine the pain and fear that parents in Gaza are going through. As parents, we demand that the UK government immediately ends arms sales to Israel and calls for a ceasefire.

“How are we to explain to our children that our government is actively endorsing the murder of children in Palestine? That we are exporting bombs and refusing to call for a ceasefire? For the sake of all children everywhere, the siege on Gaza must end and the occupation must end.”

School friends Uli, 12 and Elayza, 13 came to the demonstration wearing their names sellotaped to their arms.

“A lot of kids in Palestine are dying in the bombing and because their bodies can’t be identified, parents are writing their names on their arms and legs,” Uli told LondonWorld.

School friends Elayza, 13  (left) and Uli, 12 (right) came to the demonstration wearing their names sellotaped to their arms.School friends Elayza, 13  (left) and Uli, 12 (right) came to the demonstration wearing their names sellotaped to their arms.
School friends Elayza, 13 (left) and Uli, 12 (right) came to the demonstration wearing their names sellotaped to their arms.

The pair of Year Seven students said they would like to talk about the conflict in Gaza more in school.

“At school we’re not doing as much as we can,” said Uli.

“People don’t really know what’s happening, they just see on the news all the bombing,” said Elayza.

The protest came as the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan called for a ceasefire in Gaza amid growing pressure on Labour leader Keir Starmer over the party’s stance on the Israel-Gaza war.

The mayor warned that “substantial military escalation” will only “deepen the humanitarian disaster.”

Since Hamas’s attack on Israel on the morning of October 7, more than 1,400 Israelis have been killed and thousands injured and over 7,000 Palestinians have been killed in retaliatory Israeli strikes on Gaza, according to health officials.

LondonWorld has contacted the Foreign Office for comment.