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Pro-Palestine students occupy CU Denver bursar's office

By staff

Students occupy CU Denver bursar's office demanding divestment from apartheid Israel.  | Fight Back! News/staff

Denver, CO – On Monday, May 13, members of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) occupied the Bursar's office of the University of Colorado, Denver to demand divestment from Israel.

The rally began with speeches and chants at the Tivoli Quad encampment, which was established on April 25 to demand both CU Denver and Metropolitan State University (MSU) of Denver divest from apartheid Israel. Pressure from SDS has already forced MSU to disclose their investments in funds directly or indirectly tied to Israel, totaling nearly $18 million, and MSU also revealed that they have received over $1 million from Lockheed Martin since 1991. Speakers used this information to denounce CU Denver's unwillingness to meet any of the students' further demands.

Community members joined the rally as the students marched into the CU Denver Student Commons Building. Inside, the students sat down behind the plexiglass screen of the bursar's office, which they covered with handwritten signs in support of Palestinian liberation and the students' demands of CU Denver. Passionate chants by community members and students bolstered the eight students who chose to risk arrest for the people of Palestine.

“We can recognize that the people of Palestine are fighting a long and hard fight for liberation,” said Khalid Hamu, a CU Denver Student and a leader in SDS, “and they will win, because we know the occupation lives on borrowed time.”

Auraria Campus Police Department demanded that the protesters disperse within 15 minutes or be arrested for trespassing. Protesters continued chanting and giving speeches for another 14 minutes before leaving the building, continuing the rally outside with more chants and speeches.

The eight students who remained inside were released one by one over the course of the next 45 minutes, with citations for trespassing.

“I am a third generation anti-Zionist Jew and the escalation in Rafah right now is breaking my heart,” said a student at MSU and one of the eight students who decided to remain inside. “I think, whether you've been in this fight for a long time or a short time, the best time to fight back was yesterday but the second best time is right now.”

These citations mark a total of 66 known citations and arrests throughout the course of the Denver encampment.

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