Biden condemns ‘blatant’ anti-Semitism at pro-Palestinian protests in Colombia News

Biden’s remarks came after a video appeared to show Jewish students being threatened with a repeat of October 7.

US President Joe Biden has condemned pro-Palestinian activists who committed “blatant” anti-Semitic acts during a protest at Columbia University.

In a statement marking the Jewish holiday of Passover on Sunday, Biden said we must speak out against the “alarming surge in anti-Semitism in our schools, communities and online.” .

“Silence is complicity. Even in recent days, we have seen harassment and calls for violence against Jews,” Biden said.

“This blatant anti-Semitism is reprehensible and dangerous, and has no place on college campuses or anywhere else in our country.”

Biden’s comments came after reports emerged of harassment and intimidation of Jewish students on the Columbia University campus in New York over the weekend.

Footage shared on social media shows activists telling students to “go back to Poland” and that October 7 “will be every day for you”, referring to the Hamas attack on Israel that killed 1,139 people. It was shown that he was doing so.

Chabad of Columbia University, an affiliate of the international Orthodox Jewish movement, said in a statement that the protesters told Jewish students, “You have no culture,” and “The only thing you want to do is colonize.” He said he made statements such as “Go back to Europe” and “Go back to Europe.”

Biden’s comments came hours after the White House issued a statement calling for “physical intimidation targeting Jewish students and the Jewish community.”

“While all Americans have the right to peaceful protection, calls for violence and physical intimidation targeting Jewish students and the Jewish community are blatantly anti-Semitic and unconscionable. They are dangerous and have no place on college campuses or anywhere in America,” said White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates.

“And repeating the rhetoric of a terrorist organization is despicable, especially in the wake of the worst genocide perpetrated against Jews since the Holocaust.”

New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York State Governor Kathy Hochul also condemned reports of harassment and intimidation at the protests.

The student activist group representing the protesters said in a statement Sunday that it distances itself from “incendiary individuals” and rejects “hatred and bigotry in any form.”

“We are frustrated by media distractions that focus on inflammatory individuals who do not represent us. At universities across the country, our movement is committed to the importance of every human life. We are united in that we will do so,” the statement said.

“Our members were misidentified by a politically motivated mob. We were exposed in the press and arrested by the NYPD. [New York Police Department]And then I was locked out of my house by the university. We are intentionally putting ourselves at risk because we can no longer be complicit in allowing Columbia University to funnel our tuition and grants to corporations that profit from our deaths. ”

Columbia University, one of the most prestigious universities in the United States, has emerged as a hotbed of student protests since Israel launched a war in Gaza following the October 7 attack.

On Thursday, New York City police arrested more than 100 pro-Palestinian protesters after officers swarmed the campus and cleared an encampment set up by students.

Some students who participated in the protests, including Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar’s daughter Isra Hirsi, said they had been suspended from Columbia University and its affiliated institution, Barnard College.

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