Armored police move into UCLA anti-Israel encampment, deploy tear gas

Law enforcement agencies donned riot gear in the early hours of Thursday morning and knocked down the plywood barrier erected at UCLA by anti-Israel protestors.

Police initially “entered the area at around 1:54 a.m. local time after hours of a tense standoff with hundreds of anti-Israel protesters on campus,” Fox News reports.

(Photo by Etienne LAURENT / AFP) (Photo by ETIENNE LAURENT/AFP via Getty Images)

Crowds cheered when, shortly after entering the encampment in Dickson Plaza, the officers appeared to withdraw and the plywood was put back up.

That soon changed, however.

Live reporting from Fox News showed police deploying what one reporter said “smelled like” tear gas into the crowd.

(Photo by ETIENNE LAURENT/AFP via Getty Images)

As Fox News video showed police again ripping down the plywood barrier, CHP was preparing to “pull these people out one by one,” according to the reporter.

Shortly before 3 a.m., UCLA issued a safety alert urging students to stay away from Dickson Plaza, CNN reports.

“AVOID THE AREA of Dickson Plaza due to police activity; Police have ordered an evacuation of Dickson Plaza due to an unlawful assembly. DO NOT re-enter the area of Dickson Plaza & follow the direction of public safety personnel. UCLA has modified campus operations,” the alert read.

“The University of California Los Angeles has declared the encampment and all unauthorized tents and structures in Dickson Plaza to be unlawful,” it continued. “The University requires that everyone must leave the encampment and adjacent areas, as well as all unauthorized structures and tents immediately, until further notice.”

According to influencer Sara Rose on X, police deployed “flash bangs” and “pepper spray.”

“LA Jewish residents decided to come out, and confront the terrorists – which finally prompted UCLA to allow the police to do their job,” Rose reported. “The mostly peaceful protest has turned violent.”

According to investigative reporter Sergio Olmos, police began “making contact with protestors at the fence. 3:57am.”

“UCLA is now a War zone!” exclaimed one user on X.

Not so, according to another X user.

“As much as everyone wants to overreact to the ucla encampment and the police, it’s incredibly calm,” the user reported. “The kids are passively resisting, the cops took their time taking away all the barriers, and people are calmly being arrested. There’s a long line of kids with their arms linked.”

(Photo by ETIENNE LAURENT/AFP via Getty Images)

“Overall it’s very mellow and restrained from everyone,” the user added. “There are cameras everywhere and everyone knows it. Seems like everyone’s on their best behavior.”

It should be noted that events are still unfolding at the California university, and these reports remain unconfirmed.

“Heavily-Armored CHP Riot Police have finally Broken Through the Makeshift Barricades surrounding the Pro-Hamas Encampment at UCLA, with Dozens of Rioters being Arrested,” reported one X account at 4:25 a.m. “Police are now able to Storm the Encampment without any kind of Hinderance besides Interference from the Rioters.”

The police intervention comes after the protestors issued a long list of requested goods to help keep their encampment afloat.

Among the items requested?

“Rope & zip ties”; “Helmets, shields, & wood”; “Knee & elbow pads”; and, of course, “Vegan & gluten free food.”

Melissa Fine

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