Pro-Palestinian encampment cleared from Cal State LA, days after building takeover

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Police on Monday cleared an entrenched pro-Palestinian encampment at California State University, Los Angeles, just days after demonstrators occupied and trashed a building while the school’s president and other employees were still inside.

Officers issued a dispersal order, and about seven remaining protesters left voluntarily, campus spokesperson Erik Frost Hollins said. Tuesday’s classes will remain virtual.

“There was no use of force, no detainments or arrests,” said Frost Hollins, who uses they/them pronouns.

They said it would likely take several days to clear the encampment, which was established about 40 days ago by demonstrators protesting Israel’s war against Hamas in Gaza.

Cal State LA President Berenecea Johnson Eanes said “the only acceptable option for the safety of the entire campus community was for the encampment to disband and disperse” following the takeover of the Student Services Building last week.

“We will not negotiate with those who would use destruction and intimidation to meet their goals,” she said in a statement released Monday afternoon.

The number of people in the camp typically ranged from the 10s to 20s. But it swelled to between 50 and 100 when the building takeover occurred last Wednesday. The takeover ended early Thursday without arrests.

Eanes said later Thursday that the protesters had crossed a line and the encampment must go.

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This story has been corrected to show that Frost Hollins uses they/them pronouns.

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