ATLANTA - More than 1,000 people across metro Atlanta came together Wednesday to show support for Israel.
Teenager Abby Seidel, who just returned from Israel on a youth trip, said she heard sirens and took shelter while she was there but also said she never felt afraid.
“Everything they do in Israel is to keep their citizens safe, as safe as possible and their visitors as well,” Seidel said.
The U.S. announced signs of progress in cease-fire talks, even though the bitter fighting continued in the Gaza Strip between Israel and Hamas-backed militants.
Israeli Consul General Opher Aviran just returned from the Middle East and spoke at the rally. He said he appreciates the large turnout.
“America supports Israel and we feel great about that,” Aviran said.
Civic and political leaders, such as Fulton County Commission Chair John Eaves appeared, as did many others, including Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed.
He's been to Israel and said while he prays for peace, he also supports Israel's military action.
“I think that there is never an excuse for a terrorist organization to launch bombs into a city. I thought that it was important for me to say that today,” Reed said.
Seidel supports Israel's military action too, and also said she wants to see it end.
“It's our responsibility as supporters of Israel to show our support, so eventually, we can work for a peace agreement in Israel because nobody wants the fighting,” Seidel said.
The rally was sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Atlanta.
Republican and Democratic candidates also made appearances, including David Perdue and Jason Carter.