CHICAGO — Thousands gathered in the Loop on Saturday to support Palestinians as the conflict between Hamas and Israel intensifies.

Protesters from all over the Midwest gathered in Chicago as they demanded a ceasefire in Gaza and an end to the U.S. support of Israel, amid the conflict in the Middle East.

The massive crowd garnered support from Chicago alderpeople who came out to speak.

“We have witnessed the dehumanization of Palestinians to the point that they are trying to convince people that it is okay. That it is okay to drop bombs on children, that it is okay to continuously murder and slaughter the people of Palestine in the name of the people in the United States,” Alderwoman Rossana Rodriguez said while speaking during Saturday’s protest.

On Oct. 7, Hamas attacked Israel, killing around 1,400 Israelis and taking nearly 200 hostage. Palestinians say the attack was the result of oppression under Israeli occupation.

Since the attack, Israel has responded with airstrikes in Gaza, leaving thousands killed, injured and missing.

Saturday’s crowd spoke out against the United States backing of Israel in the war.

The group that put on the event has also planned a vigil that will take place on Sunday night honoring Palestinians who have died in the conflict.