Pelosi urges FBI probe of Gaza ceasefire protests in US and suggests Rus

Former US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Sunday that she thinks some protests in the United States demanding a ceasefire in Gaza could be linked to Russia, and that the FBI should conduct a probe into their funding.

Pelosi, who made the remarks in a CNN interview, provided no evidence for her claims. Furthermore, she was asked whether opposition to President Joe Biden’s policy in the war in Gaza could hurt the Democrats in November’s US presidential election.

A spokesperson for Pelosi said her three decades on the House Intelligence Committee informs her awareness of how foreign adversaries meddle in American politics to “sow divisions and impact our elections,” according to a statement The Post obtained from Pelosi’s office after the interview aired on CNN.

“As Speaker Pelosi said on CNN, we have to focus on stopping the suffering in Gaza, and she will continue demanding that all hostages be freed now. Speaker Pelosi has always supported and defended the right of all Americans to make their views known through peaceful protest,” the statement said. 

Pelosi wants to see further investigation ahead of the 2024 election, according to the statement. 

Claiming connection to Russia

“For them to call for a ceasefire is Mr. Putin’s message, Mr. Putin’s message. Make no mistake, this is directly connected to what he (Russian President Vladimir Putin) would like to see,” Pelosi told CNN.

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting of the Security Council via a video link in Moscow, Russia, July 21, 2023. (credit: Sputnik/Alexander Kazakov/Kremlin via REUTERS)

Pelosi’s comments marked the first time a prominent US lawmaker has accused Russia’s leader of backing US protesters calling for a ceasefire.

Protests demanding a ceasefire in Gaza have recently erupted across the US, including near airports and bridges in New York City and Los Angeles, vigils outside the White House, and marches in Washington. Demonstrators have also interrupted Biden’s speeches and events.

The protests have been organized by a range of human rights, Jewish, and anti-war activist groups.

Democratic US Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said on Sunday that opposition by many to the war in Gaza was based on “the indiscriminate loss of life” in the region.

“I think what we are seeing right now throughout the country is that young people are appalled at the violence and the indiscriminate loss of life,” she told NBC News when asked about the protests against Biden’s policy in Gaza.

The UN’s demand for ceasefire during Israel-Hamas war

The UN has demanded an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, but Washington has vetoed resolutions for such calls in the United Nations Security Council, saying it would let Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, which governs Gaza, regroup and rebuild.

Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel killed 1,200 people, according to Israeli tallies. Israel’s subsequent assault on Gaza has killed more than 26,000 Palestinians, over 1% of the 2.3 million population there, according to Gaza’s health ministry. 

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