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Thousands of Jewish teens sing 'Am Yisrael Chai' in NYC's Times Square on Saturday night, Feb. 24, 2024

Thousands of Jewish teenagers from 54 countries around the world gathered in New York City’s iconic Times Square this weekend for prayer and Jewish pride.

The “Times Square Takeover,” a highlight of Chabad’s annual CTeen International Shabbaton, took on new significance this year as representatives from the largest network of Jewish teens, including 200 from Israel, gathered to pray for the hostages and peace in the holy land. The teens were led by Israeli Jewish vocalist Gad Elbaz in singing “Am Israel Chai.”


With Israel at the forefront of their thoughts, Times Square pulsated with the rhythms of dance, song, and prayer, echoing the fervent hopes for the safe return of hostages held in distant lands.

Am Israel Chai!

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.