Police quickly clear pro-Palestinian encampment set up outside Los Angeles City Hall

Jun 4, 2024, 1:21 AM | Updated: 10:54 am

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An attempt by pro-Palestinian protesters to establish an encampment in front of Los Angeles City Hall was short-lived.

Protesters set up about 20 tents on sidewalks outside the downtown building Monday afternoon and the police department posted on social media site X that it was monitoring a “non-permitted demonstration.”

Officers moved in early Tuesday and cleared away the encampment without making any arrests, KABC-TV reported. The area was quiet during the morning rush hour.

In Pennsylvania, pro-Palestinian protesters left the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning early Tuesday after several demonstrators clashed with police. Some protesters wrestled officers over control of metal barriers and taunted them with derisive chants, and officers were seen throwing some protesters to the ground.

The conflict marked the second straight night of demonstrations. Most protesters had left the area by 2 a.m. Tuesday, after Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey and his representatives met with encampment members. No arrests were made during Monday night’s confrontations.

Maria Montano, a spokesperson for Gainey, said city officials met with the demonstrators “to find a path towards a peaceful resolution so that everyone could go home safely.”

“I want to be clear: while demonstrators reiterated some of their demands as part of the discussion, the primary focus of this meeting was not about their demands, but about how we could find a way to resolve the conflict on Pitt’s campus peacefully. Our decision to meet with them was in no way an endorsement of those demands,” she said in a statement.

The Pitt campus was open and operating normally Tuesday, said school spokesperson Jared Stonesifer.

More than 3,000 people had been arrested on U.S. campuses before summer break began last month, including protesters at the University of California’s Los Angeles, San Diego and Irvine campuses.

The latest Israel-Hamas war began when Hamas and other militants stormed into southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and taking an additional 250 hostage. Palestinian militants still hold about 100 captives while Israeli bombardments and ground operations in Gaza have killed more than 36,000 Palestinians, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry, which does not distinguish between combatants and civilians.

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Police quickly clear pro-Palestinian encampment set up outside Los Angeles City Hall