Virginia Tech removes students from Pro-Palestine protest

Posted at 6:45 AM, Apr 29, 2024

RICHMOND, Va. -- Sunday night Virginia Tech police began removing people from a protest at the school's Blacksburg Campus. On social media, protesters posted that arrests being made included both students and their professors.

The Roanoke Times reported that protesters wanted to hear from University President Tim Sands about the school's stance on the Gaza-Israel conflict.

On Sunday, the University posted an announcement saying, "As Sunday progressed, protestors continued to refuse to comply with policy and took further steps to occupy the lawn of the Graduate Life Center and outdoor spaces next to Squires Student Center. Given these actions by protesters, the university recognized that the situation had the increasing potential to become unsafe."

According to the University those gathered were advised to remove their possessions and disperse. At around 10:15 p.m. officials say police again approached protesters to ask them to leave within five minutes or be subject to arrest.

Monday morning at 3:32 a.m. the University updated their alert to say that the incident had stabilized but continued to urge people to avoid the area.

On CNN Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin spoke about the protests stating, "First we have to begin with the fact that freedom of expression and peacefully demonstrating is at the heart of our First Amendment and we must protect it. But But that does not go to in fact intimidating Jewish students in preventing them from attending class and, and using annihilation speech to express deeply anti semitic views. And therefore I have been working with our Attorney General Jason Miyares, our university presidents law enforcement at the state, local and campus level, to make sure that if there are protests, they're peaceful. We're not going to have encampments and tents put up. And yes, we will protect the ability to peacefully express yourself, but we're not going to have the kinds of hate speech and intimidation that we're seeing across the country in Virginia."

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email to send a tip.

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