PoliticsThursday 05.23.24

“You ... stood by ... as the mob of agitators gathered”: Ilhan Omar slams UCLA for attack on pro-Palestinian protesters.

Rep. Ilhan Omar on Thursday slammed Chancellor Gene Block for UCLA's response to a pro-Palestine student encampment on campus.

“You could have prevented this when you saw an angry mob on campus on the night of April 30th, but you did not. Instead, you, the UCLA leadership, and law enforcement stood by for hours as the mob of agitators gathered near the encampment with a clear intention to cause violence,” Omar said. “And because of your inaction, they acted on the intention and brutally attacked students you were responsible for.”

Chaos erupted at UCLA late April 30 after a mob attacked a pro-Palestinian encampment. Counterprotesters, many of whom did not attend the university, could be seen beating people, hitting people with poles, spraying chemical irritants and setting off fireworks.

The clashes went on for hours before law enforcement officers arrived. The encampment was eventually taken down.

“This happened in front of your eyes, on your campus, and it was livestreamed for the whole world to see. So I would like to know if you are truly committed to keeping your students safe, how did you fail these students at many critical points where you could have intervened?” Omar asked.

“Thank you for the question, I'm sorry, but I reject the premise,” Block replied. “These students were camped.”

“How do you reject the premise? Are these pictures lying? Are any of these people in jail?” Omar asked.

“Can I finish my statement?” Block asked.

“No. Are any of these people in jail?” Omar asked. “Are any of these people arrested?”

“LAPD is working on trying to identify the people who were assailants that evening. We are committed to finding out the people that were involved,” Block said.

“It's been over a month!” Omar said.

Recount Wire