Swiss Police Clear Anti-Israel Encampment at University of Bern

Students blocking Sciences-Po University display Palestinian flags, in Paris, April 26. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Earlier Wednesday morning, Swiss authorities took action to disperse a group of anti-Israel student protesters who had barricaded themselves at the University of Bern, according to an official statement released by the institution.

In recent weeks, student demonstrations calling for an end to the war in Gaza and advocating for the severing of ties with Israel have surged across Western Europe.

The intervention by Swiss law enforcement came at the request of the university’s management, which deemed the student occupation as “unacceptable.”

The final group of approximately 30 protesters vacated the university premises early in the day. Prior to their departure, they voiced pro-Palestinian slogans outside the building, as reported by a journalist from the Keystone-ATS agency.

For several days, demonstrators had occupied various university facilities, including the campus restaurant, starting from Sunday night.

Their demands included an “academic boycott of Israeli institutions,” despite the university’s ultimatum for them to vacate the premises.

University rector Christian Leumann expressed readiness for dialogue in a statement but emphasized that “an occupation driven by political motives does not foster an atmosphere conducive to constructive discourse.”

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