Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

Police clear pro-Palestinian camp at Washington University.

By triji May 9, 2024

At the break of morning on Wednesday, police in the capital of the United States removed a pro-Palestinian encampment that had been set up at George Washington University. This was the most recent evacuation of an American campus that had been shaken by demonstrations demanding an end to the fight in Gaza.

According to the American press, the Washington police department first resisted the idea of engaging in the situation. However, they eventually decided to take action on the day when Congress was scheduled to hear testimony from the mayor and police chief of the city regarding the matter.

In light of the fact that the police had removed “anti-Semitic and outlaw demonstrators,” the hearing was canceled, and Republican elected official James Comer expressed his satisfaction with the arrangement.

In contrast, Rashida Tlaib, a Democrat who was elected to office and who is of Palestinian descent, voiced her disapproval of the police operation and issued a warning to both Democratic and Republican leaders that they would not be able to “free themselves from this growing discontent with arrests.”

Freedom of expression, anti-Zionism, and the definition of anti-Semitism were all topics that were brought up again during the rallies, which rekindled the debate that had been going on in the country ever before the conflict began.

On the other hand, a number of elected figures accuse pro-Palestinian students of promoting a rhetoric of hatred and violence against Jews. Pro-Palestinian students claim that their universities and the political elite are exploiting the accusation of anti-Semitism to silence their defense of civilians in Gaza.

The garbage truck

In the early hours of Wednesday morning, the police fenced off the area surrounding the George Washington University (GW) campus, which is located in the middle of the nation’s capital and is not too far from the White House.

During the time when water was being used to clean the roadway, workers were transported to a rubbish truck the tents that were inhabited by the protesters.

Pamela Smith, the head of police in Washington, provided an explanation for the evacuation by pointing out that there had been a “escalation” in the past few days. She stated that “objects likely to be used as defensive and offensive weapons were being gathered together.”

Additionally, she mentioned that the cops used pepper spray and arrested thirty-three individuals.

According to student media GW Hatchet, which published photographs of the confrontation, including a young guy washing his eyes with clean water, the police intervened at approximately four o’clock in the morning local time. Another image of the confrontation was uploaded.

A student called for the police to be held accountable for sending “several protesters to the emergency room” during the same press conference that Rashida Tlaib was attending.

Threaten by saying, “The police have the ability to evacuate [the camp]”. According to Hanaan, a 21-year-old student at George Washington institution who took part in the pro-Palestinian demonstrations but did not desire to reveal her last name, she told AFP outside the institution that people will return immediately.

The head of the police department issued a warning to the media that the police would not permit a new camp to be established on the location.

Mike Johnson, the Republican leader of the House of Representatives, expressed his satisfaction with the dispersal of a group that he referred to as “pro-Hamas.” Johnson expressed sadness that it was necessary to “threaten” the mayor with a hearing before Congress in order to “ensure the safety of Jewish students at George Washington University.”

Students on college campuses in the United States have been demonstrating against the war that Israel is waging in Gaza for a number of weeks now. An act carried out by Palestinian Hamas in Israel in October was the initial spark that ignited the conflict.

It was requested by university administrators all around the United States that law enforcement officials destroy encampments and force demonstrators to leave their positions.

In a statement made the previous week, Vice President Joe Biden stated that “order must prevail” on campuses, while also stating that this was not about “silencing people.” It was on Tuesday that he made a commitment to fight against the “fearsome” progression of anti-Semitism.

By triji

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