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Columbia students file civil rights complaint against school amid protests. Here are the accusations.

NEW YORK — A group of Columbia University students filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the school Thursday, accusing the university of discrimination against Palestinian students and pro-Palestinian protesters.

Palestine Legal says it represents four students and the student group Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine in the complaint filed with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

According to Palestine Legal, the complaint alleges that the students and the group of students were victims of anti-Palestinian discrimination and harassment by Columbia University students, faculty and administrators.

The complaint cites university used NYPD officers to arrest more than 100 protesters last week in connection with the school’s discriminatory treatment, and claims that “the university failed to respond quickly and effectively to the report of a hostile environment,” including doxing.

Meanwhile, the US education secretary says his office is investigate reports of anti-Semitism on campuses across the country.

Deadline approaches for Columbia students to vacate campus encampment

A deadline loomed for Columbia University protesters to reach deal with the school administration. President of Dr Minouche Shafik University threatened to empty their camp if an agreement was not reached.

School officials are in negotiations with pro-Palestinian protesters who insist they will remain in their unauthorized tent city until the university accepts their demands for financial divestment from companies that make business with Israel.

“This is the story of thousands of students who do not want their tuition fees to contribute to the collective punishment and massacre of Palestinians,” said student protester Khymani James. “We condemn those who attempt to undermine our values ​​and dismantle our movement for a free Palestine.”

Shafiq said if his administration fails to reach an agreement with protesters by Friday morningshe would consider alternative options for clearing the encampment.

But on Thursday evening, the school said: “Talks have shown progress and are continuing as planned. …We have our demands; they have theirs. A formal process is underway and continuing. There’s a rumor that the NYPD was invited to campus tonight. This rumor is false.

Still, two police buses were parked nearby and there was “a notable presence of private security and police at campus entrances,” according to the Associated Press.

And shortly after midnight, about three dozen pro-Palestinian protesters handed out signs and began chanting outside the school’s locked gates, the AP reported, adding that these demonstrators “walked away when at least 40 police officers were gathered nearby.”

Columbia University student protests continue for 9th straight day

On one side of the Columbia University lawn, student protesters remain defiant in a tent encampment, while on the other side, Israeli flags are now planted.

Meanwhile, preparations for graduation are moving slowly.

“I don’t even know if there will be a graduation. That’s part of the problem,” one student said.

Nine consecutive days of campus protests forced some courses to take place remotely during the last week of classes. Now, the administration will also allow students to take their final exams virtually if they request it.

“For the past two weeks, it’s literally been anarchy on campus, as evidenced by the fact that we have to use Zoom,” said student Andrew Stein.

After House Speaker Mike Johnson said Wednesday he thinks the National Guard should be called in. if the encampment is not cleared soon, Mayor Eric Adams Strongly Disagree on CBS News New York Thursday Morning.

“We control this in the New York City Police Department. Nobody does it better, we don’t need the National Guard,” Adams said.

The mayor added: “We must remain focused on ensuring people can exercise their constitutional right to protest without harming innocent people. »

Governor Kathy Hochul, who has the authority to call in the National Guard, said earlier this week that she didn’t think it was necessary to deploy them.

A heavy NYPD presence around the school’s perimeter remains, although protests have been quieter over the past two days and satellite demonstrations outside campus have dwindled, reports CBS New’s Ali Bauman York.

Pro-Israel students say protests put them in danger on Columbia University campus

Pro-Israel students say pro-Palestinian protesters have shouted threatening and anti-Semitic chants and fear for their safety.

“I left campus because I didn’t feel safe and it was also Passover,” Stein said.

“I haven’t been able to study for a week and a half, so now at this point, I said, I’m trying to disconnect from it, stay in my dorm and work because I have two weeks to catch up,” said student Jonathan Lederer.

Stein and Lederer just returned to school after reporting they were attacked during a protest on campus over the weekend.

“Someone threw a rock at my head, so I was physically assaulted on campus and the NYPD couldn’t come to campus. Public safety was nowhere to be found,” Lederer said .

Hundreds of people attended a pro-Israel rally in front of campus along Broadway on Thursday evening.

“My heart goes out to every Jew who is subjected to this virulent anti-Semitism that goes unstopped,” said Upper West Side resident Naomi Weiss.

“We saw particularly what happened here in Colombia: the calls for Hamas, the celebration of Hamas. It was a wake-up call,” said Luke Moon, executive director of the Philos Project.

“We are here to remind the world that there are 133 hostages still being held, hopefully alive in Gaza,” said Bronx resident Danny Chamides.

“Every honest, Judeo-Christian person who loves Western civilization should defend Israel,” said actress Patricia Heaton.

At one point, these protesters crossed paths with pro-Palestinian demonstrators, who staged a demonstration shortly after the pro-Israel rally. At least one person was taken into custody.

Rep. Ilhan Omar visits student protesters at Columbia University

Rep. Ilhan Omar visited pro-Palestinian protesters on the campus of Columbia University on Thursday.

In an article on“I had the honor of seeing the anti-war encampment at Columbia University. Contrary to the attacks from the right, these students are joyfully demonstrating for peace and an end to the genocide taking place in Gaza. I am impressed .of their bravery and courage.”

Omar’s daughter, Isra Hirsi, said she was suspended from Barnard College after attending a pro-Palestinian protest at Columbia University last week.

Protests on college campuses in New York, New Jersey

A pro-Palestinian encampment was set up Thursday at the City College of New York in Harlem. College officials say they are working to determine whether the protesters are affiliated with the CUNY system.

City College adds that it is committed to the principles of freedom of expression, but that any demonstration must remain peaceful, non-threatening and devoid of hatred.

Students at Princeton University in New Jersey launched a pro-Palestinian protest Thursday morning. They set up camp, but they are not allowed to set up tents. The school says it strictly enforces its rules while allowing free expression.

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jack colman

With a penchant for words, jack began writing at an early age. As editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper, he honed his skills telling impactful stories. Smith went on to study journalism at Columbia University, where he graduated top of his class.After interning at the New York Times, jack landed a role as a news writer. Over the past decade, he has covered major events like presidential elections and natural disasters. His ability to craft compelling narratives that capture the human experience has earned him acclaim.Though writing is his passion, jack also enjoys hiking, cooking and reading historical fiction in his free time. With an eye for detail and knack for storytelling, he continues making his mark at the forefront of journalism.
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