The president of George Washington University is stepping up his rhetoric against the pro-Palestinian camp

The president of George Washington University is stepping up his rhetoric against the pro-Palestinian camp

George Washington University President Ellen Granberg said the pro-Palestinian encampment that has occupied part of the university’s campus for more than a week “has evolved into what can only be classified as an illegal and potentially dangerous occupation of GW property.”

Granberg contrasted the encampment with previous on-campus demonstrations related to Israel’s war against Hamas in Gaza, describing the current situation as “increasingly unsafe.”

“When protesters overcame barriers established to protect the community, vandalized university statues and flags, surrounded and intimidated GW students with antisemitic images and hateful rhetoric, turned people away from public areas based on their beliefs, and ignored, demeaned and rejected Police Officers GW and university maintenance staff, protests are no longer peaceful or productive,” he said.
“All these things have happened at GW in the last five days.”
He said the encampment violated various university policies and occupied space reserved for law students’ final exams. The university also believes the protest involved people not affiliated with the school, he said.

Granberg said the university is not equipped to handle the situation alone and “must rely on the support and experience of the DC Metropolitan Police Department.”

The Washington Post has reported that the DC Metropolitan Police Department and the mayor’s office have rejected requests from the university to disperse the protesters.

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser defended the decision in a statement on Friday, saying: “We support peaceful protests, and I rely on MPD and their experience and expertise to decide what kind of intervention is necessary and when.”

Granberg said the school is in communication with DC officials and county police to prepare for an increased presence on campus. CNN has reached out to MPD for more details.

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