On its website, the university strongly condemned the chase. “We emphatically stand against the events of last night. There is no room for anti-Semitic or Islamophobic expressions on the Woudestein campus. When these rules are violated the safety of students, staff and protesters cannot be guaranteed. This is testing the limits of our own possibilities here”, the university says on its liveblog about the situation.

Student with Israeli flag

A video showing the man being chased by a group of protesters is frequently shared on social media. According to the university, the man carrying the Israeli flag is said to be an Erasmus University student.

The video shows the man with the flag walking towards the plaza where the protesters have set up their tents. There he is approached and chased by a group of about six people whereupon the man runs away and eventually disappears between the buildings behind the Van der Goot building. According to the university, security guards intervened, which cannot be seen on the video, the protesters also deny that security intervened, says Çağlar Köseoğlu, the lecturer speaking on behalf of the protesters.
According to a university spokesperson, security guards intervened out of sight of the video, and there was also said to have been contact with the student carrying the Israeli flag afterwards.

Limits of capabilities

The university says it is in constant and close contact with ‘the triangle’ about ‘the manageability of the situation’ because it is ‘reaching the limits of our own capabilities’ with incidents like this.

It strikes Köseoğlu that for the first time since the start of the demonstration last Thursday, the university is talking about possibly not being able to guarantee the safety of students and staff on campus. “Especially since we have recently seen how on canmpuses in the Netherlands ‘safety’ has been invoked to create the most unsafe situations for both students and teachers.”

No conversation yet

It has not yet come to a conversation between the protesters and the Executive Board. According to spokesperson Köseoğlu, the students are willing to engage in a conversation but under certain conditions: namely, that it takes place in public at the encampment, and that there is no negotiation over the demands they have made.

The Executive Board, the spokesperson said, has three requirements for a conversation namely that the students do not wear face coverings and can identify themselves, and that the conversation takes place in a quiet place and not at the encampment as the protesters want. “We looked to see if we could find a place that was quiet, but where the protesters would have a view of the group, but we didn’t come up with that, but this offer still stands,” the spokesperson says.

Protest palestina gaza campus plaza studenten avond_30mei2024_verf paint leuzen graffiti2_Daan Stam

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