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Pro-Palestinian protesters at Sonoma State University set up tent encampment

Pro-Palestinian protests have reached the campus of Sonoma State University, with students setting up a tent encampment and calling for an end to the violence in Gaza.

The demonstrators have pitched dozens of tents on campus since Friday and additional protesters joined over the weekend.

Sonoma State president Mike Lee said the protest has been peaceful so far. Campus police said they are committed fo safety on campus and support free expression.

"A lot of us here are working-class students and we're realizing that this is a time for using institutional power to help those who can't -  who don't have a voice," said student Albert Levine. "Most of us at this camp didn't even know each other until we came together and now, like, we're so close. It's beautiful."

The university released a statement saying, "Sonoma State University is primarily concerned with three things during such events: the safety of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors; supporting the right to free expression by our community; and minimizing disruption to the teaching, learning, and working taking place on campus.

"The University Police Department is deeply committed to making sure that those participating in the encampment — and those who are not — are safe and secure."

On Monday, protesters also set up a tent city on the campus of Sacramento State University, among the latest colleges to see mass protests over the war in Gaza and the U.S. role in arming the Israeli military.

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