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New York College Students Forced to Hide in School Library from Anti-Israel Mob

Jewish students at a New York City college were locked in their school’s library for 20 minutes on October 25 as pro-Palestinian demonstrators pounded on the doors and shouted slogans.

The incident on Wednesday night at Cooper Union, a private college in downtown Manhattan, occurred after pro-Palestinian and pro-Israel students held dueling rallies. It came on a day when, at a New York University demonstration nearby, a protester waved a sign showing a Star of David in a trash can. Meanwhile, further uptown at Columbia, supporters of Israel rallied and decried that school’s administration.

Footage from the incident at Cooper Union showed a group of Jewish students in the library, while protesters outside pounded on the building’s doors and windows, chanting “Free Palestine,” waving signs advocating a boycott of Israel and calling for a ceasefire in Israel’s war against Hamas in Gaza. Building staff had made the decision to lock the doors.

Israel went to war against Hamas after the terror group slaughtered over 1,400 people, most of them civilians, in southern Israel on October 7, in what US President Joe Biden has highlighted as “the worst massacre of the Jewish people since the Holocaust.”

The NYPD has been in touch with the school and present on its campus, and told the New York Jewish Week that there was no property damage, nor criminal reports or injuries during the incident. But Jewish students who spoke to CBS said they felt threatened.

“It was tense, people were nervous,” said one student who appeared in footage of the incident and spoke to CBS but did not give her name. “They were specifically acting very aggressive in those spaces where outwardly Jewish students were sitting.”

CBS reported that the pro-Palestinian protesters released a statement saying, “Our protest was not targeting any individual student or faculty but the institution itself.” The statement also disavowed antisemitism.

In a statement to the New York Jewish Week, Cooper Union said, “The library was closed for approximately 20 minutes late this afternoon while student protestors moved through our building. Some students who were previously in the library remained there during this time.”

Source: https://www.timesofisrael.com/jewish-students-barricade-in-nycs-cooper-union-as-protesters-chant-free-palestine/