Police at UCLA Issue Unlawful Assembly Order at Pro-Palestine Encampment

Police at UCLA Issue Unlawful Assembly Order at Pro-Palestine Encampment
U.S. Police officers face a protester as they stand guard after clashes erupted on the campus of the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), in Los Angeles on May 1, 2024. (Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images)

Police at UCLA issued an unlawful assembly order over loudspeakers on Wednesday evening, ordering people to clear out of a pro-Palestinian encampment following a night of violence.

The order to disperse was broadcast around 6 p.m., urging demonstrators to vacate the area. There is a large law enforcement presence standing by at the campus “to help promote safety,” the university announced on Wednesday evening.

Demonstrators at the encampment were told over a loudspeaker that the university required them to leave or they risk violating the law and could be subject to penalties, including arrest.

Classes for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday were canceled “due to the distress caused by the violence that took place on Royce Quad late last night and early this morning,” according to the university.

Violence erupted among pro-Palestinian and pro-Israeli demonstrators shortly before 11 p.m. on Tuesday.

According to Chancellor Gene D. Block, “a group of instigators came to Royce Quad to forcefully attack the encampment that has been established there to advocate for Palestinian rights.”

For hours, chaos ensued without police or campus security intervention as physical altercations unfolded, including the use of makeshift weapons and fireworks near the encampments.

The office of California Gov. Gavin Newsom criticized the “delayed” police response as “unacceptable.”

The encampment, situated on part of Royce Quad, was described by the university as an “unauthorized physical encampment” that was established on April 25 by demonstrators, including both students and non-affiliated individuals.

The chancellor said that the university was “carefully examining our own security processes” in light of the violence.

The heavy police presence that was amassed at UCLA on Wednesday included members of the Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, California Highway Patrol, and UC Police Department.

UCLA has largely taken a lighter touch thus far in managing the demonstrations on its campus compared to the University of Southern California and Columbia University in New York.

University of California President Michael Drake said he “fully” supports UCLA’s actions, stating that the institution must be “as flexible as it can” in order to balance free speech while ensuring campus safety and functionality.

California Highway Patrol (CHP) officers
California Highway Patrol (CHP) officers keep watch at a pro-Palestinian encampment, the morning after it was attacked by counter-protestors at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) campus in Los Angeles, Calif., on May 1, 2024. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

From The Epoch Times

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