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Urgent Appeal: Condemn the arrest of students who protested Israeli Ambassador’s address at UC Irvine.
Eleven students were arrested last Monday (February 8th) after persistently interrupting and challenging Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren during a controversial lecture on Israel-US relations at UC Irvine, California. The individuals were removed from the lecture hall by Irvine police after interrupting Oren on numerous occasions, with their comments including references to Zionism.
The protests continued after Oren took a 20 minute break after the first series of challenges, with other students leaving the lecture hall during the talk in order to stage a protest outside.
Oren’s address was also met with applause by some members of the audience, with UCI Chancellor Michael Drake claiming to be embarrassed by the students’ outburst.
The students were arrested by Irvine Campus police under the charge of disrupting a public event. The police response has been deemed disproportionate, given that the students protested in a non-violent manner and made no incitement to violence.
For more information, including testimonies from the students involved, please visit http://www.irvine11.com/.
The Right to Education Campaign supports the eleven students who were arrested for their vocal opposition to the presence of Israeli state representatives on campus. This is in accordance with the CampaignÂ’s policy of boycott, divestment and sanctions.
Please send your appeals to the following addresses to protest the treatment of the Irvine 11.
Chancellor Michael Drake
Acting Dean of Students Rameen Talesh