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Cops Clear Pro-Palestine Encampment at UCSB after Last Warning from Chancellor Yang



By Lily Karofsky


Around 1:15 a.m. Sunday, law enforcement officers entered UCSB's campus and cleared out the long-standing tent encampment erected by anti-Israel protesters.


The police action removed from university grounds the most visible sign of a political and cultural conflict that has wracked the student body since last fall. Protests followed Israel's strong military response in Gaza following the savage massacre of more than 1,000 Israelis last Oct. 7 by Hamas, the terrorist group that rules the Gaza Strip.


However, it is unlikely to end the wave of protest that swept over UCSB, and many other colleges across the nation, challenging Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's conduct of the war.


The police sweep and dismantling of the encampment, in the early morning hours of Sunday, came after four separate law enforcement orders to disperse. Most of those in the encampment did so, but five people who refused were arrested. They were later released, according to a statement from the university.


Before law enforcement, including UC police, sheriff's deputies and SBPD officers arrived, Chancellor Henry Yang sent a final warning to those in the so-called "UCSB Liberated Zone."


"Dear Liberated Zone,

 

We have sought to engage in discussions with you in the hope that our dialogue would result in an agreement that would end the encampment.

 

We now remind you and inform you that the encampment is in violation of UC policies and an illegal trespass. We call on you to remove your personal items and leave the encampment immediately. Any items left behind will be treated as abandoned.

 

Henry T. Yang, Chancellor

David Marshall, Executive Vice Chancellor 

Garry MacPherson, Vice Chancellor for Administrative Services"


The encampment was set up at the beginning of May and was for the most part peaceful. However, a number of Jewish students complained of being harassed as they walked by,


On Monday, June 14, a group of protesters took over nearby Girvetz Hall, threatening janitorial staff, and trashing the building.

 

They fled in the early hours of Wednesday, as a task force of law enforcement officers moved in, planning to remove them.


Images: The scene as police dismantled the encampment (Instagram frame grab); Police officers prepare to enter the area (Instagram frame grab); The scene near the former encampment a few hours after the police action (Lily Karofsky).


Lily Karofsky is a UCSB student and a freelance journalist.




 

 

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