Just one day after more than 90 people were arrested at a pro-Palestinian protest on the USC campus, a similar protest took place at the Westwood campus of UCLA. Participants formed an encampment of tents outside of Royce Hall.

Several dozen protestors sat inside the encampment of 40 to 50 tents, which was established early on Thursday morning. Organizers of the “Palestine Solidarity Encampment,” which are similar to their counterparts at USC, issued a list of demands that included divestment of University of California and UCLA Foundation funds from companies that were tied to Israel, along with an immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war and an academic boycott of UC against Israeli universities. This included the suspension of study-abroad programs.

Participants erected a makeshift wooden fence alongside the encampment and displayed signs featuring slogans such as “Blood on the UC Hands” and “When people are occupied, resistance is justified.”

UCLA student Tai Min, one of the event’s organizers, stated, “There’s students, there’s community members, it’s a large coalition of people who are here together with similar demands. All the people here, we’re committed to this fight. We’ve been here for months, in different capacities. Everyone here has been organizing in different ways for a long time. Everyone on this campus has been aware of what’s been happening for over 200 days, and we want to just really amplify our demands and finally make it clear to the administration why we’re here and what we’re demanding: transparency in finances, no more funding of genocide, statements about the genocide, acknowledging the genocide. That’s why we’re here.”

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UCLA issued a BruinAlert Thursday, and stated that it is monitoring the situation to “support a safe and peaceful campus environment that respects our community’s right to free expression while minimizing disruption to our teaching and learning mission.”

While officials said classes will resume as planned, access to Royce Hall and the Powell Library has been restricted. Students who need access to Royce Hall are asked to show their Bruin card for entry.

Supporters of Israel also arrived to voice their opinions. Many are condemning the demonstration, and accusing it of being antisemitic.

Rabbi Dovid Gurevich, with the Chabad House at UCLA, said, “It’s not unexpected considering everything going on in other campuses. We kind of anticipated this coming here.”

The rabbi added, “It’s still very unfortunate. It makes many Jewish students feel unsafe and targeted, and general hatred is not a pleasant thing to be around.”

Mary Osaka, vice chancellor of UCLA Strategic Communications, stated that “the safety and wellbeing of our entire Bruin community.”

However, citing “new safety measures,” USC has canceled the main graduation ceremony that was planned for May 10. The university stated that it will still host dozens of commencement events, including the traditional individual school commencement ceremonies where students cross the stage to receive their diplomas.

Tensions, which were already high, were heightened after the university canceled a planned commencement speech by Asna Tabassum, the school’s pro-Palestinian valedictorian, over safety concerns.

Tabassum stated that the call was “almost a one-way conversation – and then the next day they came to me, they gave me a call and said ‘It’s unfortunate, but you don’t get to speak.’”

USC Provost Andrew Guzman has said that the debate over Tabassum giving the commencement speech took on an “alarming tenor.” Her speech, they claimed, would have presented “substantial” security risks to the event that draws 65,000 people to campus. While Guzman did not specify if there had been threats, he stated, “We cannot ignore the fact that similar risks have led to harassment and even violence at other campuses.”