CHICAGO
11/20/2012 02:42 pm ET

Pro-Palestinian Rally: Chicago Protesters Gather In Plaza To Decry Civilian Deaths

Hundreds of protesters packed the Loop's Federal Plaza Monday evening to rally against the recent Middle East violence in Gaza that has killed at least 54 Palestinian civilians.

During the rush hour, the rally disrupted evening commuters as the protesters demonstrated with signs and chants. According to CBS Chicago, the group says the attacks by Israel on Gaza were "unprovoked."

ABC Chicago reports that an evening prayer preceded the protest, with many frustrated by the Obama administration's support of Israel.

"The problem with U.S. policy is you support Israel unequivocally all the time, even when they're massacring civilians," Hatem Abudayyeh of the U.S. Palestinian Community Network told ABC.

The march started around 4:30 p.m., with the protest drawing mostly Chicagoans, though Fox Chicago spoke with several who came from out of state, like Wisconsin, to show support.

"We ask President Obama to simply stand against what is happening--to oppose the massacre of the children, women and men and innocent civilians of Gaza," Awad Hamdan of the American Muslims for Palestine said to Fox. "And to definitely withdraw the military support of Israel immediately."

(Read the facts and figures on the Israel-Gaza offensive.)

At noon Tuesday, a Jewish group was slated to gather in the Thompson Center to support Israel's position in Gaza.

As of Tuesday morning, Hamas officials said a truce could be reached by the end of the day, though a spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said "we're not there yet."

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