Democratic Mayor Brandon Johnson of Chicago called for a ceasefire in the war between Israel and Hamas Wednesday, according to multiple reports.
Chicago has been plagued by homicides in recent years, with 19 people being killed so far in 2024 and another 582 in 2023, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. Johnson made the comments during a Wednesday news conference as the Chicago City Council delayed consideration of a resolution calling for a ceasefire, WBEZ reported.
“I condemn the actions of Hamas, but at this point now I believe we’re looking at 25,000 Palestinians that have been killed during this war and the killing has to stop. So yes, we need a cease-fire,” Johnson said.
Chicago has dealt with gang violence and a high homicide rate for years, with 88% of murders going unsolved in 2017. The city saw 11 people in 2023 killed over Memorial Day weekend, while Walmart announced it was closing four stores in the area due to crime.
The radical terrorist group Hamas carried out a deadly terrorist attack on multiple locations in southern Israel Oct. 7, killing over 1,200 people and taking over 200 hostages.
Chicago police arrested over 100 protesters who blockaded the Israeli consulate in the city during a November protest.
Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and other left-wing members of the House of Representatives known as “The Squad” released statements calling for a ceasefire almost immediately after the attack by Hamas.
“I wish I could give you maybe an answer to what impact it will have on other people who make decisions, but I can say from a very personal note: I know that for black liberation we had to make statements that maybe not in the immediate it had an impact,” Johnson said.
Harold Hutchison on January 24, 2024