Pro-Israel counter-protest at University of Washington campus remains peaceful

UPDATE (6:30 p.m.)

Some protesters were seen dispersing after hours of chanting between pro-Israel and pro-Palestine protesters.

While they did come face-to-face at the barricade near the Quad, police made sure no violence broke out between the two groups.

UPDATE (5:30 p.m.)

Many pro-Israel and pro-Palestine protesters remain at the University of Washington campus, with both sides continuing to stand with their group.

It appears the barricades and police presence is working to deter conflict between the two parties, limiting it to a chant-off. 

Pro-Israel protest at UW

As the pro-Palestine encampment remains enclosed in the Quad, those supporting Israel have mostly congregated in Red Square.

UPDATE (4:30 p.m.)

A large group of people has formed near one of the main entrances of the pro-Palestine encampment at the UW Quad.

So far, the gathering remains peaceful with most standing their ground, chanting, and waving flags.

UPDATE (4 p.m.)

Some protesters have begun gathering at the University of Washington campus.

University Police and campers have established barricades at the entrances of the pro-Palestine encampment in the Quad. Fencing is set up to prevent the opposing groups from clashing.

Some were seen wearing all-black clothing and masks. Graffiti is also plastered across several walls on campus, some in support of Palestine and some pro-Israel.

This story will be updated throughout the day. Check back for new details.

ORIGINAL STORY (12:30 p.m.)

A counter-protest is expected at the University of Washington campus Sunday afternoon in response to multiple recent pro-Palestine protests.

A march in support of Israel is scheduled for 4:30 p.m., coming a day after hundreds participated in a "Palestinian Day of Struggle" protest at Westlake Park.


Hundreds of Seattle protesters gather for Palestinian Day of Struggle

Over 500 pro-Palestine protesters were at Westlake Park on Saturday, commemorating the 76th day of "Nakba," which means "catastrophe" in Arabic.

In response to the pro-Israel rally, UW police will be barricading entrances to the pro-Palestine encampment at the Quad, which has been there for two weeks. UW's Vice President of Public Safety said the hope is to limit interactions between the opposing groups.

In a statement, UW said they expressed concerns to organizers of both groups, asking them to keep confrontations at a minimum. The university also thanked Muslim and Palestinian leaders who are working to deescalate.

"Every day the encampment remains, the security concerns escalate and become more serious – for our UW community and for the people in the encampment itself. The University is aware of a counter-protest being organized this Sunday that gives us significant concern because of the likelihood for confrontations. We have repeatedly conveyed our concerns about these risks to encampment organizers and to those who organize counter-protests. We are grateful to all, including leadership in the Jewish community, who are working to deescalate the situation," part of UW's statement read.

Tensions between opposing groups already rose on the UW campus earlier this week, as pro-Palestine protesters blocked the stairs to the Quad during an event at the HUB featuring right-wing speaker Charlie Kirk.


Scuffle breaks out at University of Washington pro-Palestine protest

As many pro-Palestine protestors filled up the University of Washington campus, tensions rose as right-wing speaker Charlie Kirk hosted an event at the HUB.

A brief scuffle broke out during that Tuesday protest, and pepper spray or mace was deployed by people in the crowd. However conflict was held at a minimum with campus police on scene.


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