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DU campus protesters fail to leave encampment voluntarily

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School leaders cited increased safety concerns when they set a 9 p.m. Tuesday deadline for protesters to leave voluntarily Carnegie Green.

DENVER — Pro-Palestinian protesters failed to meet a 9 p.m. Tuesday deadline set by University of Denver officials to clear their encampment on Carnegie Green and remained there early Wednesday morning.

A group of DU students began protesting on the university’s campus on May 9 with a list of demands for the school’s leaders. The protest group said they built a “solidarity encampment for Palestine” to urge the university to “divest from Israeli war crimes.” 

On Tuesday, school leaders cited increased safety concerns in a letter asking the protesters to leave the encampment on their own.

“Those engaged in the encampment protest at DU have made their voices heard, as have those counter-protesting,” Chancellor Jeremy Haefner said in an email to the DU community Tuesday. “From the first day of the protest, DU leadership has visited the encampment daily and demonstrated a commitment to protecting students’ right to free speech.”

“However, over the past several days, we’ve become increasingly concerned about the safety of our campus community, including our protesters, as well as the disruption of normal campus operations,” the letter continued. “As shared previously, in addition to ongoing policy violations regarding DU ID checks for safety, there has been a sharp increase in reports of discriminatory and harassing behavior from individuals both inside and outside the encampment. In addition, the false emergency call which diverted away important safety resources while vandalism occurred forced an urgent re-evaluation of the encampment as a form of safe free expression. “

From May 21: Vandalism occured on DU campus after fake emergency call used as distraction, officials say

The letter also said that school leaders made the request to voluntarily leave the campus during “at an extended and productive meeting with encampment participants” on Tuesday.

That did not happen, and the university said Wednesday morning that officials “continue to work to determine the next steps in moving toward the disbandment of the camp.” School officials also noted that they expect all those taking part in the protests to be affiliated with DU as current students, faculty, or staff members.

From May 9: Pro-Palestine protesters set up camp on University of Denver campus

Similar student protests have been organized on campuses across the country protesting Israel’s attacks on Gaza and demanding their school’s divestment from companies linked to Israel’s military campaign. 

An encampment on the Auraria Campus in Denver was taken down over the weekend. Organizers there said their protest would shift to “a new iteration of exhibitions throughout campus.” 

RELATED: Pro-Palestinian protesters abandon tent encampment on Auraria Campus

SUGGESTED VIDEOS: Pro-Palestinian protests take over college campuses

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=videoseries



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DU campus protesters fail to leave encampment voluntarily

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