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Pro-Palestine protesters disrupt college commencement ceremony (VIDEOS)

The activists have shouted slogans against “funding genocide” during a ceremony at the Michigan Stadium

Dozens of pro-Palestine protesters disrupted the University of Michigan spring commencement ceremony on Saturday, demanding that the college cut ties with Israel over the ongoing war in Gaza. 

During the event at the Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, the students in keffiyehs and graduation cap chanted “Regents, regents, you can’t hide! You are funding genocide!” and “Disclose, divest, we will not stop!” They held up Palestinian flags as they were walking between the aisles. 

Some attendees shouted abuse at the protesters, with one person yelling “shut the f**k up.” Another person in the audience was heard screaming “You’re ruining our graduation!” 

According to the New York Times, a plane flew over the stadium with a sign that said “Free Palestine” and “Divest from Israel now.” Another plane carried a message “We stand with Israel. Jewish lives matter.”

🇵🇸 Graduates at the University of Michigan demonstrate for Palestine at the commencement ceremony in Ann Arbor today.

“Disclose, divest, we will not stop, we will not rest.” 🇵🇸❤️ pic.twitter.com/ogbg5Tq3vL

— Adam Y. Abusalah (@adam_abusalah) May 4, 2024

University of Michigan commencement ceremony RUINED after mob of anti-Israel activists stormed the ceremony waving Palestinian flags.

“Palestine will live forever.”

pic.twitter.com/Bmp3z0inmn

— Oli London (@OliLondonTV) May 4, 2024

The protest occurred after more than 2,300 Palestine supporters were arrested across over 70 US college campuses this week for sit-ins and refusing to leave makeshift encampments on university grounds, according to an NBC News tally. On several occasions, police resorted to using stun grenades and pepper spray when students and activists failed to comply with orders.

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The affected universities issued statements saying they were forced to ask the police for help because the protesters were disturbing the education process and breaking campus regulations. Pro-Palestine activists have also been accused of accosting Jewish students and shouting anti-Semitic slogans.

“There’s the right to protest, but not the right to cause chaos,” President Joe Biden said in a televised statement from the White House on Thursday, adding that students have “the right to walk across the campus safely without fear of being attacked.” 

More than 34,000 Palestinians have been killed during Israel’s military campaign, which nears its seventh month. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated this week that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) would enter the southern Gazan city of Rafah, which is crowded with Palestinian refugees. The IDF still intends to “eliminate Hamas’ battalions” in the area, Netanyahu said.

The latest round of fighting between Hamas and Israel erupted on October 7, when the Palestinian militants carried out a surprise raid into Israeli territory, killing some 1,200 people and taking more than 200 hostages. Dozens of captives were subsequently released as part of a prisoner swap during a weeklong ceasefire in November.

 

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