Anti-Israel protesters disrupt New Year's Eve festivities in New York City, Boston

Anti-Israel demonstrators took to the streets in several U.S. cities, including New York City and Boston, on New Year's Eve as celebrations for the arrival of 2024 were underway. In New York City, a large group of protesters gathered at Columbus Circle before marching down Central Park South and to Fifth Avenue, calling for a cease-fire in the ongoing conflict between Israeli forces and Hamas terrorists in the Middle East. These protesters carried Palestinian flags and chanted slogans such as "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free."

New York City Mayor Eric Adams had already instructed the police to heighten security for New Year's Eve in Times Square due to the near-daily protests in the city. Pro-Palestinian groups had expressed plans to protest in Times Square against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip. During the demonstrations, at least one individual set off a smoke bomb at Macy's in Herald Square before being escorted out.

The group Shut it Down for Palestine appeared to be involved in some of the protests in New York City, calling for international action in support of Palestinians in Gaza. They expressed their desire to maintain momentum and increase pressure through marches, walk-outs, sit-ins, and other forms of direct action aimed at entities that fund, invest in, and collaborate with what they perceive as Israeli occupation and genocide.

Similar protests also took place in Boston, where pro-Palestinian demonstrators chanted slogans demanding a cease-fire and waved Palestinian flags.

Security was heightened in many other cities across the country in response to the protests, with some cities, including Chicago and Sacramento, having to close roadways.


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