As the conflict along the Gaza Strip escalates in the Middle East, supporters of both Israel and Palestine are protesting in Washington. On Thursday night, they held a demonstration outside the White House to voice their concerns for innocent people caught in the crossfire.
Another demonstration will take place outside the State Department on Friday, followed by a march to the White House. The organizing group, Answer Coalition, leans mainly to the left, but says they want peace for all.
Coalition members joined a solemn group of Israeli supporters to protest outside the White House last evening, but were separated from each other by a police fence. Documentary photojournalist Claire McHale was there taking photos for her blog and she says the separation was symbolic of the main issue, both sides not being able to come together.
"I kept going back and forth between the side of the fence that was separating the protesters, and the police officer was like, 'Pick a side. Pick a side. You gotta get on one side or the other,'" says McHale. "And I was like, but 'I'm not picking a side, I want to document both sides.'"
Additional protests are planned in Baltimore's McKeldin Square Saturday at noon.
A slate of new legislation has received an endorsement by the Virginia State Crime Commission that they say would give law enforcement more tools to investigate and prosecute child abuse.