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Published on May 11, 2024
UPenn Pro-Palestinian Protestors Rally Again After Police Dismantle Encampment, Faculty Member Resigns in ProtestSource: Unsplash/ Latrach Med Jamil

Just hours after being ousted by the police, pro-Palestinian protesters have regrouped and resumed demonstrations at the University of Pennsylvania. Authorities dismantled an encampment earlier in the day, which led to the arrest of nine UPenn students alongside 24 individuals with no university affiliation, according to FOX29.

Shortly after the encampment at UPenn was disrupted, the protestors took to the streets, passing by the temporary residence of Interim President Larry Jameson on their march, 6ABC reported. The demonstrators, whose aim is to pressure the university into divesting from Israeli interests amidst conflict with Gaza, managed to regroup and resume their efforts despite the police intervention.

As the crowd traveled through University City, they made an imposing scene carrying Palestinian flags and blocking roads, including the well-known intersection by Drexel University's dragon statue, relayed NBC10 Philadelphia. Tension escalated momentarily when a few protestors scaled the fence surrounding Jameson's home where a flare was lit, but there were no immediate reports of arrests following the clash with police.

In the wake of the morning's clash, some faculty have expressed strong opposition to the university's handling of the protests, "I can no longer work collaboratively with an administration that has arrested its own students," Tulia Falleti, a Penn faculty member, said in disgust as she announced her resignation as chair of the faculty Senate, as 6ABC reported. Students echoed the sentiment for a more engaged discussion between opposing sides on campus. "We need our president to actually go in there," stated third-year student Ahmed Abdella, emphasizing the campus's divisive atmosphere.

Despite the tensions, the protest actions have generally been peaceful compared to those on other campuses across the states. The demands of the protestors center on the transparency of UPenn's investments, and the call to sever ties with businesses linked to Israel. The university has yet to provide a public response to the continuation of the protests or the calls for divestment.