Pro-Palestinian protesters begin dismantling UC Berkeley encampment

Pro-Palestinian encampment being dismantled on UC Berkeley's campus. May 14, 2024. 

Pro-Palestinian protesters have begun dismantling their encampment on UC Berkeley's campus on Tuesday. 

In a statement to KTVU, UC Berkeley spokesperson Dan Mogulof said, "If the process is completed the University will discuss the talks we have been having with the protesters in recent weeks." 

Just two weeks ago, demonstrators at the University vowed to keep the encampment going until their demands were met. The protests are over the Israel- Hamas conflict that has been ongoing since Oct. 8, 2023, claims of Palestinian genocide and the fact that many demonstrations are calling for divestment from Israel. 

The encampment, known as the UC Berkeley Free Palestine Encampment, first appeared in the school's Sproul Plaza weeks ago. This was preceded by what the group calls the "Sather Gate Blockade", which led to tensions with the campus Jewish community and claims of antisemitism. 

"Two weeks into our encampment, the Chancellor's Office entered into negotiations. Now these negotiations have concluded," the group said in a news release Tuesday evening. Indicating this is far from over, the group wrote in bold type, "We began as a gate action, became a camp, and are only just beginning." 

Their document includes a letter, purported to be from UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ, who indicates that she has addressed UCB Divest Coalition's demands, but that some of those demands are under the authority of UC Regents, not the Office of the Chancellor. 

The encampment included a bullet-point interpretation of the Chancellor's letter, saying it lays the framework for some of their concerns over divestment from Israel and anti-Arab discrimination.  

The group's document is called Free Palestine Commencement and is available to read in full, here. 

SkyFOX flew over the situation where things have remained peaceful. UC Berkeley officials are said to be taking a hands-off approach to the situation. 

Also of note, there are signs at the encampment that say ‘Gone to Merced’ and ‘We’ll be Back'. There is another UC campus in Merced, but it has not been confirmed that demonstrators plan to migrate to this campus for further protests. However, their document does say, "If one encampment falls, another rises."

The protest movement gained momentum in the last month with encampments popping up at several Bay Area campuses. However, the movement is winding down as schools wrap up their semesters. 

UC Berkeley campus signs at a Pro-Palestinian encampment. 

UC Berkeley campus signs at a Pro-Palestinian encampment. 

Pro-Palestinian encampment being dismantled on UC Berkeleys campus. May 14, 2024. 

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Pro-Palestinian encampment being dismantled on UC Berkeley's campus. May 14, 2024. 


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