NYPD in Riot Gear Enter Columbia’s Occupied Hamilton Hall | Video

Journalism students at the university report police using “industrial tools” entered the building on ladder trucks

On Tuesday night NYPD dressed in what journalism students at Columbia University described as “riot gear” entered Columbia’s Hamilton Hall, which was occupied by approximately 60 students for most of the day.

The students at WKCR also reported police used “sledgehammers at the front of Hamilton Hall” to enter the building.

Police told media just before 11:00 p.m. local time that Hamilton Hall was cleared out completely, according to CNN. There were no reports of people resisting arrest.

Meanwhile, MSNBC also reported “hundreds” of people outside the Hamilton building at Columbia were chanting “Shame on you” and that the situation is the “worst nightmare” for everyone involved.

“As I said, Alex, this is their worst nightmare and that’s for people on many sides of this issue,” Hylton said. “Even for students who are upset with the classmates who escalated it to this point, who don’t condone what’s happened in Hamilton Hall, this is not what they wanted to have happen.”

The occupying students renamed the building to Hind’s Hall in honor of six-year-old Hind Rajab, who was killed under Israeli fire as authorities attempted to rescue her in Gaza.

Reports also surfaced that the NYPD deployed tear gas on campus and attached ladders to the school to enter the building.

Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine tweeted that police “pushed three students down the stairs and dragged out on passed out student,” and Columbia student Gwynne Hogan wrote that authorities would not let her and fellow students out of their buildings.

Columbia University issued a lengthy statement approximately 30 minutes after police entered the building. The school claimed in part “We regret that protesters have chosen to escalate the situation through their actions. After the University learned overnight that Hamilton Hall had been occupied, vandalized, and blockaded, we were left with no choice” and “We will not risk the safety of our community or the potential for further escalation.”

The occupation has called to mind a similar act at the school decades ago. On April 30, 1968, police arrested nearly 700 students who had occupied various buildings at Columbia, including Hamilton, to protest U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.

The Columbia Spectator reported that “dozens” of people were arrested by police Tuesday night. The student newspaper also stated that the NYPD “approached the admissions office entrance, where they pushed protesters to the ground and slammed them with barricades” and “another group approached the main entrance, arresting protesters who had formed a human chain outside the doors.”

In a related turn of events, UCLA leaders declared on Tuesday that the pro-Palestine encampment on campus is “unlawful” and has warned that students who don’t leave may be suspended or expelled.

Also on Tuesday, video was shared on social media claiming to show a Jewish girl who had been beaten up by protesters on the UCLA campus. However, the video does not show the alleged attack and nothing identifying UCLA is visible in the clip. The video also cannot be found on the Instagram account it is attributed to.


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