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Pro-Palestine Protests on Columbia Campus

IRYNA HUMENYUK, NEWSCASTER: Just after 1:30 this afternoon, Officers from the NYPD entered Columbia University’s campus to break up a student-led Pro Palestine protest calling for the schools to divest from organizations and companies funding and profiting from Israel. Claire Davenport has more.

CLAIRE DAVENPORT, BYLINE: Student protestors camped out on the school’s South lawn overnight in pop-up tents. But this afternoon, police led or carried some of the protestors away in zip-tie handcuffs, while surrounded by scores of onlookers. 

At issue: some of the companies Columbia invests in, such as Hyundai and Airbnb. Activists say the car companies’ equipment is used to demolish Palestinian homes and the vacation rentals firm operates apartment listings in Israeli settlements inside the Occupied West Bank.

Yesterday university president Minouche Shafik testified in front of the US Congress defending the university’s record fighting anti-semitism on campus. The same day according to an Instagram post by the protest organizers, the school agreed to one demand - financial transparency regarding university investments. 


An email from the president cited campus safety as the reason for authorizing the New York Police Department to clear out the encampment. The university has struggled to contain and respond multiple Pro-Palestinian protests this school year.


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