NYU pro-Palestinian protesters cleared out by NYPD, arrests made. See the school's response.

NYPD clears out pro-Palestinian protest outside NYU business school

NEW YORK -- A pro-Palestinian encampment at NYU was cleared out by police Monday night, resulting in more than 100 arrests

The NYPD moved in on the demonstration at Gould Plaza near the Stern School of Business just after 8:15 p.m. and started taking down tents and making arrests. 

CBS New York's Dan Rice reported at least two dozen demonstrators being taken to four police buses. While that was happening, protesters started throwing objects in the direction of police officers.

"We stand with Palestine and we stand with the liberation of all people," one protester said.

After the police moved in, many protesters relocated to a location on West 3rd Street in Greenwich Village, not far from the Stern School of Business. Others carrying signs started marching peacefully in Lower Manhattan.

Earlier in the day, students took over the school's steps and were also joined by what appeared to be some faculty members. Several pro-Palestinian organizations gathered in solidarity. They also set up the aforementioned tents.

"Unity is power. We're all here in unity to support Gaza, Palestine," student Carter Bui said.

NYU officials said there was a breach in barriers set up there. 

"We witnessed disorderly, disruptive and antagonizing behavior that has interfered with the safety and security of our community," the head of security said. 

What the protesters are demanding

Demonstrators had been ordered to clear the plaza area by 4 p.m. Monday.

"We want to see an acknowledgment from our university that there is a genocide happening and that there are Palestinian students that deserve to feel heard, deserve to feel safe in their environment, and deserve to have a university who calls out the genocide of their people," one said.

"It's definitely helpful to see there are a lot of people from our school who support the movement and are not scared of our school's response," another said.

Across the street from the rally was a group standing with the flag of Israel. One of them had only one thing to say.

"There's one side here and one side of history. This is the right side here. That's all I have to say," the person said.

Earlier in the day, CBS New York met two people who were in disagreement -- one pro-Israeli, the other pro-Palestinian -- but they came together to have a constructive conversation.

"At the end of the day, people that want the best of the situation, they want the most peaceful most desirable situation for everyone," an NYU junior named Jacob said.

"I feel like a lot of people should get out here more and if you don't know what's going on, educate yourself first," freshman Kimora Davidson said.

NYU: "We will continue to support individuals' right to freedom of expression"

NYU released the following statement on Monday night:

"Today's events did not need to lead to this outcome.

"This morning, some 50 protesters began a demonstration on the plaza in front of the business school. This occurred without notice to the University, and without authorization. The University closed access to the plaza, put barriers in place, and made clear that we were not going to allow additional protesters to join because the protests were already considerably disruptive of classes and other operations in schools around the plaza.

"Nonetheless we made no move to clear the plaza at that point because high among the University's aims was to avoid any escalation or violence. So, the University was deeply disturbed when, early this afternoon, additional protesters, many of whom we believe were not affiliated with NYU, suddenly breached the barriers that had been put in place at the north side of the plaza and joined the others already on the plaza. This breach was in violation of directions from Campus Safety Officers and in violation of multiple University rules.

"This development dramatically changed the situation. We witnessed disorderly, disruptive, and antagonizing behavior that has interfered with the safety and security of our community, and that demonstrated how quickly a demonstration can get out of control or people can get hurt. At one point, we explained to the protesters that they needed to disband in an hour, and there would be no adverse consequences.

"Nevertheless, many refused to leave. We also learned that there were intimidating chants and several antisemitic incidents reported. Given the foregoing and the safety issues raised by the breach, we asked for assistance from the NYPD. The police urged those on the plaza to leave peacefully, but ultimately made a number of arrests.

"We will continue to support individuals' right to freedom of expression, and, as we have said since October, the safety of our students and maintaining an equitable learning environment remain paramount."

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