The pro-Palestine student movement raises its tone and the camps spread

The university protests in support of Palestine are spreading across Spanish campuses and are gaining special intensity in Barcelona, ​​where yesterday a strike and a march with hundreds of students took place through the city center while the eleventh day of the protest camp is being held.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
15 May 2024 Wednesday 04:26
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The pro-Palestine student movement raises its tone and the camps spread

The university protests in support of Palestine are spreading across Spanish campuses and are gaining special intensity in Barcelona, ​​where yesterday a strike and a march with hundreds of students took place through the city center while the eleventh day of the protest camp is being held. in the gardens of the historic building of the University of Barcelona (UB).

Fifty students spent the night in tents on the campus of the Universitat Autònoma (UAB) and yesterday morning they tried to cut off access to the complex by Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat. People avoided the pickets by an alternative route, there were no mobility problems around the campus, unlike those that have caused other protests, and the professors were able to conduct classes normally, according to sources from this university.

The UAB has not quantified the impact of the strike. On the other hand, the UB was able to easily account for it: total unemployment in four of its 17 faculties. In the remaining 13, absolute normality. The pickets were positioned at the doors of the historic building and blocked access to the faculties of Mathematics and Computer Science and Philology and Communication, where classes were suspended. The same thing happened at the Raval headquarters, which houses the faculties of Geography and History and Philosophy. Meanwhile, the Prou ​​Complicitat amb Israel coalition staged a protest at the headquarters of Acció, the Generalitat agency for promoting business internationalization, on Passeig de Gràcia. His performance, which was intended to be a tribute to the Palestinian prisoners, was aborted by a forceful action by the Mossos d'Esquadra.

At noon, a few hundred university students, joined by representatives of other collectives - from the CGT to Marea de Pensionistas, passing through the Socialist Youth Organization, Lluita Internacionalista, Sindicat d'Estudiants dels Països Catalans or Assemblea Libertària del Raval - gathered in front of the UB. They began a demonstration along the Gran Via and went up Roger de Llúria to Mallorca, in front of the Government Delegation, heavily guarded by riot police from the Mossos d'Esquadra and the National Police.

Emma Cercós, anthropology student and spokesperson for the Committee of Solidarity with the Palestinian People of the UB, highlighted in her parliament that in the United States two thousand students have been detained due to camping out on campuses. She stated that “the Palestinian people have been persecuted and massacred by Zionism for decades,” she accused Israel of practicing “the most publicized genocide in our history” and demanded the suppression of universities' relations with Israeli institutions and companies. She agreed with the rest of her speeches in refuting the two-state solution. “An absolute farce,” she said.

Although they are a minority among the census of 60,000 UB students, those mobilized will maintain the indefinite camp, a type of protest that in Spain began on April 29 at the University of Valencia. Jaén, La Rioja and Salamanca have been the last to join the camps. A sterile movement? The University of Granada (UGR) will hold an extraordinary governing council tomorrow to address the review of collaboration and relations with higher education institutions in Israel that have not expressed “a firm commitment to peace and compliance with international humanitarian law.” .

The Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities (Crue), which includes 77 centers (50 public), yesterday released a statement on the occasion of the International Day of Coexistence in Peace in which, without mentioning the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, it reaffirms its “firm commitment to a future of peace, coexistence and progress in our universities, and in the entire world.”