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23 Apr, 2024 08:00

Another pro-Palestinian protest dispersed in New York (VIDEOS)

Multiple demonstrators have been arrested outside NYU business school, authorities have said
Another pro-Palestinian protest dispersed in New York (VIDEOS)

Dozens of pro-Palestinian protesters have gathered at New York University, with the rally later broken up by police who made a number of arrests, according to local officials and media reports.

NYU spokesman John Beckman said the demonstration kicked off on Monday morning on Could Plaza in front of the Stern School of Business and some 50 people took part, adding that this happened “without authorization.”

The officials at the institution put barriers in place to prevent anyone else from joining in “because the protests were already considerably disruptive of classes and other operations in schools around the plaza,” Beckman said.

According to CBS News, the rally appeared to be supported by some of the university’s students. It was also reportedly backed by several pro-Palestinian organizations which set up tents in the area.

One of the demonstrators said, as quoted by the network, that the protesters wanted NYU to acknowledge that “there is a genocide happening and that there are Palestinian students that deserve to feel heard.”

Beckman said that while the university initially made no effort to clear the plaza, hoping to avoid violence, it “was deeply disturbed” when the outer perimeter was breached by additional protesters.

Following this and what the spokesman called “disorderly, disruptive, and antagonizing behavior,” the university ordered those assembled to vacate the premises, and later called the police. The spokesman also said that there had been “intimidating chants” and reports of “several anti-Semitic incidents.”

“The police urged those on the plaza to leave peacefully, but ultimately made a number of arrests,” Beckman said. The New York Police Department confirmed to The Hill that arrests were made, but would not say how many.

Videos circulating show a densely packed crowd near the university carrying placards, chanting pro-Palestinian slogans, and beating drums. Other clips show police officers appearing in riot gear, taking several people away in the thick of the protest. One video also showed several police buses slowly driving through the crowd.

The NYU protest followed a similar rally at Columbia University and coincided with a demonstration at Yale University where at least 60 people were arrested. US campuses and universities have seen a surge of protests following the deadly attack on Israel by the Palestinian armed group Hamas in October. Israel’s relentless retaliatory assault on Gaza has caused unprecedented destruction in the enclave and left more than 34,000 people dead.