Members of Los Angeles’ Jewish community gathered in Encino Sunday evening to mourn those killed in the Hamas attack of Oct. 7, and also call for the release of more than 200 Israelis and other foreign nationals who are still being held captive.

A march began at Ventura Boulevard and Hayvenhurst and ended with a vigil at Encino Park. 

Among those mourned was Avi Sassi, a San Fernando Valley resident who died when Hamas attacked the Nova music festival, killing at least 260 people.

Encino pro-Israel vigil
Members of L..A’s Jewish community gather in Encino Park to mourn the victims of the Hamas attack. Oct. 22, 2023.

On Sunday, demonstrators held signs, Israeli flags and photographs of those killed or kidnapped. They also chanted slogans such as “Bring them home” and sang the Israeli national anthem.

“Most of us here are Israelis. We all have family in Israel. Some of them are now under fire and some of them are serving,” Haim Linder told KTLA. “We have in our community here people who lost relatives already. We have people here who have [family] who got kidnapped. Emotions are very high.”

Avi Sassi
Avi Sassi from Los Angeles was among those killed in the Hamas attack on Oct. 7, 2023.

Los Angeles Police officers kept watch over the demonstration.

No incidents were immediately reported.

Israeli warplanes have struck targets across the Gaza Strip as well as two airports in Syria and a mosque in the occupied West Bank allegedly used by militants, while a second convoy of humanitarian aid reportedly began crossing into Gaza from Egypt on Sunday afternoon.

The war, now in its 16th day, is the deadliest of five Gaza wars for both sides. The Palestinian Health Ministry said Sunday that the death toll in Gaza had reached at least 4,651 people, with another 14,254 people wounded in the besieged territory.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.