Hundreds gather for pro-Palestinian protests in Hackney

Protesters outside the Town Hall. Photograph: Zoë Garbett

Hackney played host to protests in response to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in Gaza, with two gatherings within the same week.

The first took place outside the Town Hall on Wednesday 1 November, and was followed by a second at Dalston Junction on Saturday 4 November.

The Town Hall vigil saw around 200 people gather to support calls for a ceasefire in Gaza and to prevent civilian deaths.

On the Saturday, a rally was held at midday in Dalston prior to the main march in central London, which involved thousands assembling at Oxford Circus, at the BBC, and Charing Cross station.

Zoë Garbett, Green Party councillor and mayoral candidate, was present at both demonstrations.

In her speech on the Saturday, Garbett spoke of the “atrocious” situation in Gaza and called for a ceasefire.

She later took to Twitter to say: “Shame on everyone not calling for #CeasefireNOW.”

Garbett’s fellow mayoral candidate, Independent Peter Smorthit, also called for an end to hostilities at a hustings this week.

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition hopeful Annoesjka Valent was unable to attend the hustings, but her stand-in Brian Debus echoed demands for a ceasefire.

Two local Labour councillors broke party ranks to back a ceasefire in a letter published by the Labour Muslim Network.

Many of those attending pro-Palestinian marches support a ceasefire in the war that erupted last month after Hamas killed 1,400 people in Israel, most of whom were civilians, and took more than 200 hostages.

More than 10,500 civilians in Gaza have been killed in the ongoing response from the Israeli military, according to the Hamas-run health ministry.