May 18, 2024

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Pro-Palestine protest | A hundred people were arrested at Boston University

Pro-Palestine protest |  A hundred people were arrested at Boston University

(BOSTON) A hundred people believed to be pro-Palestinian demonstrators were briefly detained by riot police at Boston University on Saturday, the latest episode of a student movement that has spread widely in the United States.

Ten days ago from the famous Columbia University in New York, this new wave for the Palestinians and against the Israeli-led war in the Gaza Strip spread to many institutions from California to New York (northeast) through the south of the country.

At Northeastern University in Boston, a large historic city in the Northeast that is home to Harvard, “about 100 people were arrested by the police; Northeast U. Students who showed the cards were released […] Those who refused were arrested,” the university announced in X.

“Killing the Jews”

“Violent anti-Semitic insults” such as “killing Jews” were uttered on campus, which “went too far,” before declaring “back to normal” at the end of the morning, thundering the establishment.

An “illegal” camp was dismantled on Saturday morning, according to footage posted on social media.

Photo by John Dulumaki, Associated Press

The university police arrested him.

The university alleged that “professional organizers with no connection to Northeastern U” had “intruded into the student protest that started two days ago.”

Students will be subject to “disciplinary procedures” but “no legal action”.

And Columbia's presidency, the epicenter of the student mobilization, announced Friday evening that New York police had abandoned the evacuation of tents in a “village” of 200 people on its campus lawn, a leader announced. In January, the movement was banned from entering after anti-Zionist threats in a video.

The teenager later offered his “apologies,” according to CNN, which described the campus as “relatively calm” on Saturday.

On the other hand, the situation was tense at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn), whose president had to resign this winter.

Following “credible reports of harassment and intimidation”, the President ordered the immediate removal of a camp on the premises.

In California, Humboldt Polytechnic University will be “closed” for the remainder of the semester due to the “occupation” of two buildings, according to a press release.

Riot Police

Images of riot police arresting students at the invitation of university leaders spread around the world.

They echoed the movement on American campuses during the Vietnam War. A painful memory, too, when the Ohio National Guard opened fire at Kent State University in May 1970, killing four peaceful students.

The Gaza solidarity movement has taken a highly political turn seven months before the US presidential election amid accusations of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism and the protection of freedom of expression, a constitutional right in the US.

Israel has the world's second largest Jewish population (about six million) and millions of Arab-Muslim Americans.

Across the United States this week — particularly in California and Texas — scores of pro-Palestinian students and activists were arrested and mostly released without charges.

At these rallies for Gaza, many Jewish students, mostly from the left, actively supported the Palestinian cause, keffiyeh on their shoulders, and condemned Israel's “genocide” against Palestinians.

Photo by Nicole Krain, The New York Times

A pro-Palestinian demonstration at Emory University in Atlanta

But many young American Jews express their discomfort, even their fear, in the face of slogans perceived as anti-Semitic.

So Skyler Siaratsky, 21, a student at George Washington University in the capital, said he was spat on this week when he arrived with an Israeli flag.

“They call us terrorists […] But the only tool we have is our voices,” responded “Mimi,” a Columbia student attending a pro-Palestine rally.

The war was sparked on October 7 by an unprecedented attack against Israel by Hamas commandos from the Gaza Strip, which resulted in the deaths of 1,170 people, mainly civilians, according to an AFP report based on official Israeli data.

In response, Israel vowed to destroy the Islamist movement, and its sweeping military operation killed 34,388 people, mostly civilians, according to Hamas.

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