Joe Biden Calls For Cease-Fire In Middle East Amid Silent Protests At Morehouse College

United States President Joe Biden was met with silent protests from students and faculty at Morehouse College this past weekend while delivering the annual commencement speech at the famed HBCU’s graduation ceremony.

On Sunday (May 19), President Biden appeared at the institution in Atlanta, where he gave his latest statements in regards to the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine in the Middle East. “We can’t stop wars that break out and break our hearts,” the Delaware native said. “I want to say this very clearly: I support peaceful, nonviolent protests. Your voices should be heard, and I promise you I hear them.”

According to Biden, he’s in the process of presenting a solution that would ensure a peaceful resolution between both nations. “What after? What after Hamas? What happens then? What happens in Gaza? What rights do the Palestinian people have? I am working to make sure we finally get a two-state solution. The only solution: for two people to live in peace, security and dignity,” Biden said. “It is one of the hardest, most complicated problems in the world. There’s nothing easy about it. I know it angers and frustrates many of you, including my family.”

ATLANTA, GEORGIA – MAY 19: U.S. President Joe Biden poses for a photo with Morehouse College President David A. Thomas (2nd R), and others at the Morehouse College Commencement on May 19, 2024 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

The President also shared that he’s in support of an end to the violence between Israel and Palestine, as he revealed that he’s called for an “immediate cease-fire” on both sides. “It’s a humanitarian crisis in Gaza. That’s why I’ve called for an immediate cease-fire. An immediate cease-fire, stop the fighting. Bring the hostages back,” Biden said. “I’ve been working on a deal as we speak. Working around the clock to… get more aid into Gaza, rebuild Gaza.”

During Biden’s speech, a segment of graduates appeared at the ceremony wearing Palestinian flags and keffiyehs draped around their shoulders, while other students sat with their backs turned to the President in a show of protest. One Morehouse faculty member stood with her back to Biden while raising her right fist raised in the air.

Biden’s speech was preceded by Morehouse College valedictorian DeAngelo “DJ” Fletcher’s, who also called for a cease-fire in the war-ravaged region, which has resulted in numerous fatalities over the past several months. “It is only right for the class of 2024 to utilize any platform provided to stand in solidarity with peace and justice,” Fletcher said during his address. “The Israel-Gaza conflict has plagued the people of its region for generations.”

He continued, adding that it’s his duty as a Morehouse alum to use his platform to help inspire justice and peace. “It is my stance as a Morehouse man — nay, as a human being — to call for an immediate and permanent cease-fire in the Gaza strip,” Fletcher said. “Hear the people of this world sing the song of righteous justice.”