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Law enforcement issues dispersal order for pro-Palestinian protesters at UCLA: LAPD

What to Know

  • Violence erupted between pro-Palestinian protesters and pro-Israeli counterdemonstrators Tuesday night at UCLA.
  • Counterdemonstrators threw sticks, cones, rocks and other objects at the pro-Palestinian encampment — actions that escalated to violence including physical fights.
  • The melee also included firecrackers near the encampment and different chemicals sprayed during the confrontation.

The Los Angeles Police Department issued a dispersal order Wednesday for the pro-Palestinian protesters who have set up an encampment on the University of California Los Angeles campus.

A heavy law enforcement presence remains at the University of California Los Angeles Wednesday following a chaotic night between pro-Palestinian protesters and pro-Israeli counterdemonstrators that included fights, firecrackers and different chemicals sprayed during the confrontation.

Pro-Palestinian protesters set up their encampment behind plywood and metal barriers, which were broken down violently by counter-protesters Tuesday night. Sticks, rocks, cones and other objects were thrown at the encampment – actions that escalated to violence condemned by Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass and Gov. Gavin Newsom.

In a statement released to the UCLA community, Chancellor Gene D. Block described the individuals who incited the violence as “instigators.”

“Late last night, a group of instigators came to Royce Quad to forcefully attack the encampment that has been established there to advocate for Palestinian rights. Physical violence ensued, and our campus requested support from external law enforcement agencies to help end this appalling assault, quell the fighting and protect our community.”

“However one feels about the encampment, this attack on our students, faculty and community members was utterly unacceptable. It has shaken our campus to its core and — adding to other abhorrent incidents that we have witnessed and that have circulated on social media over the past several days — further damaged our community’s sense of security.”

Block continued his statement saying students who were impacted by Tuesday’s violence could seek counseling and psychological services via the university’s student affairs website.

All UCLA classes were canceled Wednesday in wake of the melee due to “the distress caused by the violence that took place on Royce Quad.”

In a press conference held Wednesday, Muslim civil rights groups and organizers of the protest said about 25 people were injured during Tuesday’s confrontation. The severity of those injuries was not disclosed.

As of Wednesday evening, no arrests were announced in connection with Tuesday’s events. Law enforcement was not present when the melee broke out. The Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol have since arrived on campus to monitor activity.

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