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People gather at UArizona for 'Shut it Down for Palestine' protest

Posted at 1:16 AM, Nov 10, 2023

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Over a thousand people gathered at the University of Arizona for the 'Shut it Down for Palestine' protest where students and faculty were joined by members of the community, showing their support for Palestine.

Their goal was to call attention to the university’s ties to the military-industrial complex and voice their opposition.

Students and staff united to demand a ceasefire in Gaza. They denounced the escalating death toll of 11,000 Palestinians, including 4,000 children.

"The students at the University of Arizona never claimed support for Hamas, they've only asked for a free Palestine. They've recognized that there's a genocide happening in Gaza," protest organizer, Tonya Nunez said.

Protesters say they were voicing their grievances over historic oppression, displacement, and murder.

"I think as human beings we really need to stand in solidarity with other human beings for their right to life and freedom," protester Haleh Niazmand said.

"We need to look at this in the historical context that has decades of oppression decades of partial and displacement, explotation, incarceration and murder of Palestinians and that's why people are here today standing up for it," Nunez added.

The group plans to rally again during the UArizona Board of Regents' meeting next week.

The University declined to comment directly, citing First Amendment rights.

"Palestinians are being systemically eliminated from this earth. Their culture, their livelihood, their families, their property is being erased off the face of the earth," protester Mike Allen said.

Bivian Contreras is a real-time editor for KGUN 9. Bivian graduated from the University of Arizona School of Journalism with a Bachelor's degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Broadcast and is currently pursuing a degree in Broadcast Operational Meteorology. Share your story ideas and important issues with Bivian by emailing or by connecting on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.