Los Angeles police say they are stepping up patrols around the city after a former Hamas leader called for a “global day of jihad” on Friday.
The LAPD released a statement on Thursday, Oct. 12, saying the department will be closely monitoring the situation.
“The Los Angeles Police Department is aware of recent statements made calling for action as it relates to the conflict in the Middle East. We have no information of any specific or credible threats to the City of Los Angeles but we are continuing to assess the situation,” the LAPD said.
The department especially plans to keep an eye on Jewish and Muslim cultural sites.
“We will be reaching out to our local Jewish and Muslim communities and will be providing extra patrol during this unimaginable time,” police said. “Remember if you see something, say something.”
Response to Statements Made Regarding Conflict in the Middle East pic.twitter.com/Fmd752nMfL
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) October 12, 2023
The NYPD is beefing up patrols in New York City as well, although the department said on social media there are no credible threats against the city.
“We are aware of the concern that postings circulating online have caused, and we have increased our uniform deployments at large gatherings and cultural sites to ensure public safety out of an abundance of caution,” the NYPD said.
Late Thursday, SAG-AFTRA sent out a notice to striking actors in New York and L.A., saying picketing would be canceled in both cities on Friday out of an abundance of concern.
“In light of potential safety concerns that are unrelated to our ongoing strike, there will be no SAG-AFTRA pickets in New York City or Los Angeles on Friday, Oct. 13. Stay safe and see you on the picket lines next week,” the union said.
The announcements came after ex-Hamas chief Khaled Meshaal called for protests across the Muslim world on Oct. 13, in support of Palestinians.
In a video obtained by Reuters, Meshaal said: “[We must] head to the squares and streets of the Arab and Islamic world on Friday.”
He called on Muslims in neighboring countries like in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt to join the fight against Israel.
“Head to the squares and streets of the Arab and Islamic world,” said Meshaal, who is based in Qatar and currently heads the Hamas diaspora office.
On Saturday, Oct. 7, Hamas militants carried out unprecedented attacks on Israel by land, air and sea.
As of Thursday afternoon, the death toll in Israel had climbed to 1,200 people, including at least 27 Americans, Israel’s military told CBS News. At least 1,537 people, including 447 children, have been killed in Gaza as a result of Israel’s retaliatory strikes, the Gaza Ministry of Health said.