Pro-Palestine demonstrators arrested at University of South Florida

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Police arrest a pro-Palestinian protestor at the University of South Florida // Chris Young 4/29/24

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Activists clashed with police at the University of South Florida Monday as they set up an encampment near the middle of campus. They’re joining college activists nationwide protesting the Israel/Hamas war.

“From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!”

A group of around 40 activists protested outside of the campus library, then marched to the MLK Plaza near the middle of campus with blankets and tents to set up an encampment.

University police, school officials, and a smaller group of Pro-Israel activists flanked the demonstration.

Police handed out printed guidelines to some protestors. Later, things escalated when demonstrators started to set up tents. This led to a clash with police and some protestors being escorted away by police.

Students like Kimiko Solomon acknowledge the risk, but continue to demonstrate.

“Everyone should be scared, but at the same time it’s nothing compared to what Palestinians are going through at the moment.”

Protestors are demanding USF divest from Israel, disclose all investment information, and put out a statement standing in solidarity with Palestinian and Arab students.

Allie is a demonstrator who spoke at the rally.

“They’re investment portfolio has remained private since 2013. We as students, alumni, and faculty of a public university deserve to know where USF money goes.”

In early April, a group of USF activists ended a hunger strike lasting over two weeks. They, too, demanded the university divest from Israel.

USF has this statement on its website:

“April 2024: Statement on USF’s investment policy

“For more than a decade, some individuals have campaigned for USF to divest funds from companies with ties to Israel. USF’s consistent position on this issue has been, and continues to be, that the university will not divest.

“USF’s investments are guided by its mission, fiduciary responsibilities and state and federal laws. USF does not select individual stocks or companies for investment. USF will continue to make summary information about investments public, consistent with the university’s investment policy and legal requirements.”

Watch:

Encampment at the University of South Florida campus // Chris Young 4/29/24
Woman speaks at Pro-Palestinian protest at the University of South Florida // Chris Young 4/29/24

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