Israel-Hamas: ‘Bring Them Home’ rally in central London calling for return of hostages

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The names of those kidnapped were read out during the demonstration, with Israeli flags and photos of hostages held aloft.

Hundreds of pro-Israel protesters took to Trafalgar Square yesterday afternoon (October 22) in a "solidarity rally" calling for the return of hostages taken by Hamas .

Attendees held aloft the Israeli flag and pictures of those captured in the terrorist attacks on the morning of October 7.

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The names of those captured were read out, with levelling up secretary Michael Gove among those speaking at the event.

Following the rally, Claudia Mendoza, co-chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council, said: “It is important for people to be able to come together, community members, allies and Israelis, to be able to stand with one clear, united message: that our hearts are with all the hostages and they must be brought home without delay.”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews estimates 15,000 people gathered in Trafalgar Square for the demonstration.

Two men were arrested, the Met Police has confirmed, after antisemitic abuse was heard shouted nearby.

People participating in a 'Bring Them Home' solidarity rally in Trafalgar Square calling for the release of hostages held in Gaza. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.People participating in a 'Bring Them Home' solidarity rally in Trafalgar Square calling for the release of hostages held in Gaza. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.
People participating in a 'Bring Them Home' solidarity rally in Trafalgar Square calling for the release of hostages held in Gaza. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images. | Getty Images

The hostages, which include Israelis as well as foreign nationals, are being held captive in the Gaza Strip. Only two have been released so far. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.The hostages, which include Israelis as well as foreign nationals, are being held captive in the Gaza Strip. Only two have been released so far. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.
The hostages, which include Israelis as well as foreign nationals, are being held captive in the Gaza Strip. Only two have been released so far. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images. | Getty Images

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Hundreds gathered outside Trafalgar Square to join the rally. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.Hundreds gathered outside Trafalgar Square to join the rally. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.
Hundreds gathered outside Trafalgar Square to join the rally. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images. | Getty Images
The names of those captured were read out during the demonstration. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.The names of those captured were read out during the demonstration. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images.
The names of those captured were read out during the demonstration. Credit: Peter Nicholls/Getty Images. | Getty Images

The rally followed a pro-Palestine march through central London on Saturday, in which the Met Police estimated 100,000 people took part.

Hamas is believed to have captured around 222 people in its attack on Israel. The first hostages were released by Hamas last week: Americans Judith Tai Ranaan and her daughter Natalie.

Hamas has claimed it tried to free two more people, but that Israel rejected the release. Israel disputes this, calling it "propaganda".

Since the outbreak of the conflict, more than 1,400 Israelis and 4,600 Palestinians are reported to have been killed.

Aid has begun to be let into Gaza, after Israel cut off supplies including food and electricity following the attack by Hamas.

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