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Biden says he hears voices of protesters in solidarity with Palestine

Anadolu Agency WORLD
Published May 19,2024

US President Joe Biden said he hears the voices of the protesters in solidarity with Palestine, stating that he is working for a lasting peace for the conflict in Gaza.

"I support peaceful, nonviolent protest. Voices should be heard. And I promise you I hear them," said Biden during his commencement address at Morehouse College, the historically Black and male-only institution in Atlanta, Georgia.

He said what is happening in Gaza and Israel is "heartbreaking."

"It's a humanitarian crisis in Gaza," said Biden. "That's why I've called for an immediate ceasefire, an immediate ceasefire to stop the fighting and bring the hostages home."

The US president also said he is working to bring a lasting durable peace.

"What happens in Gaza, what rights do the Palestinian people have? I'm working to make sure we finally get a two-state solution. The only solution where two people live in peace, security, and dignity," Biden added.

During his address, several students have turned their chairs.

Meanwhile, speaking ahead of Biden, DeAngelo Fletcher, Morehouse valedictorian, called for a cease-fire in Gaza, saying the conflict "has plagued the people of its region for generations."

"It is my stance as a Morehouse man to call for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip," said Fletcher.

Pro-Palestine college campus protests have been persistent since April 17, when students at New York's Columbia University launched an encampment in solidarity with Gaza and demanded that their school divest from Israel.

More than 2,000 people have been arrested at US campuses since last month amid heavily polarized debates over the right to protest, the limits of free speech, and accusations of anti-Semitism.

Israel continued its brutal offensive on Gaza despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire.

More than 35,400 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, the vast majority being women and children, and over 79,300 others injured since October following an attack by Hamas.