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Denver city council votes down ceasefire proclamation, causing uproar in council chambers

By staff

 Protesters gather outside meeting of Denver city council to demand passage of a ceasefire resolution. | Fight Back! News/staff

Denver, CO – On Monday, February 12, members of the Colorado Palestine Coalition (CPC) rallied at the City and County Building to speak in favor of a Denver city council vote to approve a ceasefire proclamation.

The CPC had been pushing the Denver city council to adopt a resolution calling for a ceasefire for months as the genocide in Gaza continues, with the city of Rafah suffering severe bombings the day before that left hundreds of Palestinians dead. The resolution finally presented for a vote was watered down compared to the original People’s Proclamation drafted by members of the CPC, with no mention of the 75 years of Israeli apartheid, the brutal occupation of the Palestinian people, and no call to end the military aid being sent to occupation forces.

Even so, activists were optimistic as they gathered in their hundreds, first filling and then overflowing even the overflow room, and spilling into the hallway outside the council. To date, over 48 city councils across the U.S. have also voted in favor of a ceasefire, which is supported by the majority of U.S. citizens.

“Somehow Palestinians are the only people who don’t get killed – we just die by magic bullets and magical bombs fired by nobody,” said Abdullah Elagha, a leader of the Colorado Palestine Coalition who has lost many family members to Israeli airstrikes in Gaza. “The language in front of you is so simple: ceasefire now,” said Elagha, finishing to uproarious applause from fellow activists gathered outside the city council room.

Over an hour later, as council members fled via police escort to vote online, the council voted to reject the proclamation 4 to 8. Protesters chanted, “Vote them out!” after booing the fleeing council members who had voted against the proclamation for spurious reasons, such as council member Flor Alvidrez citing a “lack of respectful dialogue.” After the council members fled, the protesters read out the original People’s Proclamation without redactions and committed themselves to continue the fight for the Palestinian people, finishing off with an impromptu speech outside on the building’s steps by Tim Hernandez, a Colorado House of Representatives member.

Protesters vowed to continue their struggle for Palestinian liberation. “We’re super disappointed but I don’t think it’s a surprise,” said activist Emily Ingraham, adding, “But there is always hope and we are going to keep fighting.”

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