Student lock-in at uni hall leads to cancelled classes

Protesters at a university building named it Mahmoud Hall after a Palestinian who died in Gaza.

Protesters at a university building named it Mahmoud Hall after a Palestinian who died in Gaza. Photo: AAP

Pro-Palestine protesters have spent the night locked in a University of Melbourne hall, leading to a second day of cancelled classes.

The group took over the Arts West building on Wednesday, dubbing it ‘Mahmoud’s Hall’ in honour of Mahmoud Alnaouq, a young Palestinian man killed in the Gaza war who was meant to start his studies at the university.

The activity was determined to have breached university policy and those in attendance were asked to vacate the area by 2.30pm on Wednesday, but the order was not heeded.

The university later said it was concerned by the escalation and was working closely with authorities to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

It advised that classes in the building were cancelled for Thursday and alternative arrangements would be made.

At Monash University, student protesters there said nine organisers had been accused of misconduct and threatened with suspension or expulsion.

The students say the misconduct allegations relate to non-violently defending the pro-Palestine encampment against pro-Israel activists.

Monash University has been contacted for comment.

An encampment at Deakin University at Burwood in Melbourne was told to come disburse on Monday, but students are resisting and organised a rally for Wednesday night.

Australian National University in Canberra has also told students to prepare to vacate the camp after it met organisers on Wednesday.

Pro-Palestine encampments at Australian universities:

  • NSW: University of Sydney, University of Wollongong
  • VIC: University of Melbourne, Deakin University, Monash University, RMIT University, Latrobe University
  • SA: University of Adelaide
  • QLD: University of Queensland
  • WA: Curtin University
  • TAS: University of Tasmania
  • ACT: Australian National University.


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