The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

Encampment live updates: Centennial reopened, furniture put in for commencement weekend

Jessica Xing
White chairs sit on Centennial Common along with a sign that reads, “Reserved for Private Event.” Northeastern facilities staff removed the barricades surrounding Centennial Common at 1:30 p.m. Monday.

Editor’s Note: This live feed received its last update Monday, April 29 at 1:30 p.m. All further coverage on the encampment will be reported in separate stories. 

The encampment that formed on Centennial Common Thursday was cleared out by police Saturday morning, marking the end to an near-48-hour protest effort. 

Police began removing the makeshift barricade around the protesters around 6 a.m. Saturday and went on to arrest 98 individuals, including 29 Northeastern students and 6 Northeastern faculty and staff, according to a statement from Northeastern. The university also said that protesters who produced a Northeastern ID were released and would not face legal action, but a university-led disciplinary process.

Arraignments for arrested individuals, who have been mostly charged with trespassing and failure to disperse, began Monday morning.

In a statement explaining the rationale for removing the encampment, Northeastern claimed multiple unaffiliated protesters “infiltrated” the student demonstration, and that an individual said “Kill the Jews” — a statement the university said “crossed the line.”

Huskies for a Free Palestine has refuted the claims that the demonstration was “infiltrated,” and a now-viral video shows that a pro-Israel counter protester made the “Kill the Jews” statement, not a demonstrator in the encampment. 

Around 12:30 p.m. Saturday, the university announced that campus is “fully secured” and “all campus operations have returned to normal.” 

The encampment started Thursday morning following days of nationwide student demonstrations with around 30 pro-Palestine organizers creating a “Gaza solidarity encampment”

Over the following hours, hundreds of people entered and surrounded the Common — at the encampment’s peak, around 11 p.m. Friday, over 200 protesters stood with linked arms circling an array of tents, flags, banners and food. While The News can confirm some demonstrators were not Northeastern affiliated, most appeared be students of the university.

Huskies for a Free Palestine, despite losing its encampment,  continues to demand the university disclose its financial investments, divest from and cut ties with Israeli companies and institutions and “[denounce] Israel’s genocide in Palestine and call for an immediate ceasefire, an end to the Israeli occupation and a free Palestine.”

Monday, April 29

Centennial reopened, furniture put in for commencement weekend  — 1:30 p.m. 

Facilities staff removed the barricades surrounding Centennial Common Monday afternoon, officially reopening the space for use. Buildings around Centennial were also reopened, including Shillman Hall and Ryder Hall. The Adirondack chairs typically surrounding the common are gone, instead replaced with white chairs and seating presumably in anticipation for commencement weekend. The Adirondack chairs were loaded into Olympia moving trucks Saturday morning during the encampment sweep.

Sunday, April 28

Centennial remains closed, legal and disciplinary charges pending — 11:00 p.m.

A gate blocks off Centennial Common. The Common remained closed off to students and the general public all day Sunday. (Annika Sunkara)

One day after police arrested about 100 demonstrators and removed the encampment, Centennial Common remains closed off to students and the general public. While it’s still unclear how many of the arrested individuals were affiliated with the university, various legal and disciplinary charges are pending as demonstrators work to retrieve their confiscated belongings. 

According to Massachusetts State Police, approximately 102 individuals will be charged by the Northeastern University Police Department for trespassing and disorderly conduct. Students who presented Northeastern identification will face disciplinary action from the school, but the exact nature of what the disciplinary charges will be is unknown. 

Community members of all types have voiced their displeasure with the university’s removal of the encampment, including students, faculty and alumni.

Huskies for Israel releases statement condemning encampment, backing administration’s decision to remove it — 5:35 p.m.

Huskies for Israel, or HFI, released a statement on its Instagram Sunday evening condemning the encampment and proclaimed anti-semitic remarks made by pro-Palestine protesters.

Chants of “Globalize the Intifada” and “Zionists have got to go” were of the chants mentioned in HFI’s statement; The News can confirm demonstrators chanted both of these remarks. “[The chants] ostracize and call for violence against Jews and do not belong at Northeastern University,” the statement read.

HFI also backed the administration’s decision to have police remove the encampment from Centennial Common. “We stand firmly by the local and state authorities for removing the unauthorized encampment and ensuring our safety,” the statement read. 

Many pro-Israel protesters participated in a rally at Temple Israel on Longwood Avenue Sunday, where several HFI members joined in support, according to photos posted on the group’s Instagram story.

“We are in support of a peaceful protest. We are not in support of chants to erase and dismantle the Jewish state,” HFI’s statement continued. “To misconstrue our identity and believe that Zionism and Judaism are not related is a dangerous rhetoric that causes antisemitism. We have faced this hate before, and will continue to rise above it.”

Boston Globe updates reporting on ‘Kill the Jews’ statement following university citation — 3:00 p.m. 

Two pro-Israel counter protesters hold up an Israeli flag in front of a crowd of pro-Palestine protesters Friday night. The Boston Globe updated its reporting on the “Kill the Jews” remark heard Friday night after video footage released Saturday revealed the remark was said by one of the pro-Israel protesters. (Brian Daniels)

The Boston Globe has updated its previous reporting of the “Kill the Jews” remark Northeastern used to explain, in part, police intervention to remove the “Gaza solidarity encampment” on Centennial Common.

On Friday night, during a tense 30-minute interaction in the encampment between pro-Palestine demonstrators and pro-Israel counter protesters, an individual yelled “Kill the Jews.” Hours later, the university cited the statement, along with the involvement of unaffiliated demonstrators, in its justification for using police to remove the encampment.

“The use of virulent antisemitic slurs, including ‘Kill the Jews,’ crossed the line,” the university’s statement said. “We cannot tolerate this kind of hate on our campus.”

Yesterday, video footage revealed that it was a pro-Israel counter protester, who entered the encampment later Friday night, that said the remark. In response to questions regarding the video footage and reports that the pro-Israel counter protester said the statement, Vice President for Communications Renata Nyul said the “fact that the phrase ‘Kill the Jews’ was shouted on our campus is not in dispute” and cited the Globe’s reporting.

“The Boston Globe, a trusted news organization, reported it as fact. There is also substantial video evidence. Any suggestion that repulsive antisemitic comments are sometimes acceptable depending on the context is reprehensible. That language has no place on any university campus,” Nyul said.

The Globe’s reporting Friday night does not clearly identify who said “Kill the Jews” during the verbal altercation. 

“At one point, a person called out, ‘Kill the Jews,’ while others yelled, ‘No right to exist,’ at the two counter protesters holding the Israeli flag,” the Globe’s article initially read, The News previously reported. 

The Globe’s story has now been updated to include clarifying information regarding the incident, stating that a video shared by Massachusetts Peace Action “appears to show one of the unidentified men holding the Israeli flag, yell, “‘Kill the Jews, anybody on board?’” It also now includes details on how multiple groups and individuals claimed the counter protesters made the remark.

“Student groups involved in the encampment and a peace activist organization said one of the counter protesters who was not involved in the demonstration had shouted ‘Kill the Jews,’ and that Northeastern had incorrectly blamed the pro-Palestinian demonstrators for the statement to justify the police action,” the article now reads.

The story has also been updated with an editor’s note, stating the Globe is reviewing video footage of the scene and its earlier reporting. 

“This story has been updated multiple times since Friday evening. Our latest update reflects additional information about an inflammatory statement that Northeastern University cited in its decision to clear the student encampment,” the Globe wrote in an editor’s note Sunday morning. “The Globe is reviewing video from the scene and its earlier reporting to better determine how events unfolded.”

The News could not confirm when the Globe added the editor’s note and updated reporting.

The Globe could not be immediately reached for comment on Northeastern’s use of its reporting or for any updated details on the Globe’s process to update the story.

Officers and movers clearing encampment met with verbal assault from onlookers, footage shows — 2:30 p.m.

NUPD officer Ryan Janusz looks at onlookers as they heckle him Saturday morning. Video footage from Saturday’s encampment sweep revealed several onlookers heckling officers and movers as they helped clear the encampment. (Annika Sunkara)

Video footage from the encampment sweep Saturday morning shared on social media shows multiple instances in which onlookers heckled individuals helping with the clearing of the encampment on Centennial Common. 

In a clip from Huskies for a Free Palestine’s Instagram livestream of the encampment sweep, which began early Saturday morning, an onlooker out of frame can be heard yelling “They’re not the same as you,” appearing to direct comments to a Black Boston Police Department officer who was guarding the perimeter of Centennial while police barricaded the quad.

“Do you know that your peers are the same people that beat your people up?” the same onlooker yells. “Do you know that they kill your people?” The camera recording the livestream pans to several other white officers standing nearby. 

“These two right next to you, they would fucking kill you in a minute if they had to,” the onlooker says. “You’re not the same as them.”

Other video footage shared on X shows movers loading Centennial’s Adirondack chairs into an Olympia moving truck. Protesters had used the chairs as a barricade between police and the encampment. 

“Get a real fucking job,” an onlooker standing by the back of the truck says. Another, putting a phone camera in the face of a mover carrying a chair, can be heard saying “You fucking love when children die.”

Two of The News’ reporters also heard onlookers heckle state police, accusing several of beating their wives. Other video footage shows an officer outside of Shillman Hill laughing as onlookers heckle him.

“I heard that one,” he said.

Saturday, April 27

Pro-Palestinian Jewish community members hold Havdalah, condemn Northeastern’s handling of encampment at Krentzman — 8:00 p.m.

Around 100 people attended a “Havdalah for Liberation” held near Krentzman Quadrangle on Huntington Avenue at 8 p.m. Saturday following the clearing of a pro-Palestinian encampment that morning which left about 100 people detained by police.

The event was organized by the Boston chapter of IfNotNow, an organization of Jewish Americans advocating for “a thriving future for all Palestinians and Israelis,” as well as the Boston chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace, “the largest progressive Jewish anti-Zionist organization in the world.” Havdalah is a Jewish ritual that marks the end of Shabbat and welcomes the new week through prayer and candle lighting. 

It was also promoted on Huskies for a Free Palestine’s Instagram. Though the service was organized by a non-affiliated organization, many Northeastern students were in attendance, and several Jewish Northeastern students who participated in the two-day encampment spoke at the event. 

Rachel Powlen, a Jewish undergraduate student at Northeastern who participated in the encampment, provided an overview of the encampment, demonstrators’ “disclose, divest and denounce” demands for administration and the arrest of more than 100 of them that morning. Powlen, along with other Jewish organizers and student speakers, made clear that their calling out of Israel and Northeastern was “in no way anti-semitic.” 

“The frequent conflation of anti-Zionism with anti-semitism is truly disappointing and unfair,” Powlen said. “We absolutely condemn this and, once again, say, ‘Not in our name.’”

There was minimal police presence surrounding Krentzman — around five Northeastern University Police Department officers floated in and out of the barricaded area at Krentzman Quad, but did not approach the Huntington Avenue area where Havdalah took place. 

At approximately 8:22 p.m., sprinklers went off around the quad, drawing attendees off the grass and onto the sidewalk. Organizers quickly adapted and proceeded to lead the prayer and candle lighting. 

Another speaker, Harvey, who only identified themself by their first name, expressed that they are not a Northeastern student, but were at Centennial “in a marshal role for the entirety of the encampment.” They described a tense interaction with a pro-Israel counter-protester. 

“In response to a question posed by a counter-protester, I explained that I, myself, am Jewish as well,” they said. “In response, he said, ‘You’re not really Jewish if you are here.’ … I chose to just say, … ‘You don’t get to define my Judaism for me.’” 

Harvey defended fellow encampment demonstrators against any media or university claims that they were “anti-semitic” or “dangerous.” 

“I worked with them for almost 72 straight hours,” they said. “They are some of the kindest, smartest, most passionate people I’ve ever met. They are dedicated to making this world a better place, to helping people.” 

They went on to quantify the aid received from non-participants who still contributed to the encampment and supporting detained demonstrators. 

“We got so many donations. We got so much support. … We had so many cars for jail support today, we had to turn drivers away,” they said. 

As the Havdalah ended around 8:50 p.m., an organizer closed with instructions on how to continue supporting Palestine and other encampment demonstrations. They encouraged attendees to donate to mutual aid funds supporting Palestinians in Gaza, and to attend ongoing encampments at other Boston-area universities, including Tufts University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University.

Northeastern Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine release statement in solidarity with arrested students — 6:30 p.m.

Two members of the NU FSJP stand around the encampment on Centennial Common Thursday afternoon. The FSJP released a statement on Instagram at about 5:30 p.m. Saturday expressing their solidarity with the Northeastern students arrested Saturday morning. (Elizabeth Scholl)

Northeastern Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine, or FSJP, released a statement on Instagram at about 5:30 p.m. expressing its solidarity with the Northeastern students arrested Saturday morning, as well as with pro-Palestinian students protesting at other Boston universities.

“We, Northeastern University faculty and staff, affirm our solidarity with, and full support of, our Northeastern students, as well as the students on other university campuses, including MIT, Emerson College, Boston University and Tufts University, who are protesting Israel’s genocide in Gaza and the ongoing occupation of the West Bank and other Palestinian lands,” the statement reads. “We stand in solidarity with our students who were arrested on the morning of Saturday, April 27.”

A prior statement from FSJP released Thursday asked that administration not “act punitively against Northeastern students for engaging in peaceful protest.”

According to Saturday’s statement, FSJP was alarmed at Thursday’s police presence on Centennial Common, in which officers from the Boston Police Department encircled the protest for about half an hour. FSJP said it was relieved at the officers’ eventual departure.

“We hoped this reflected reconsideration by the administration and that perhaps the aggressive policing tactics used at Columbia, NYU, University of Texas-Austin, Emerson and too many other schools would not be repeated at Northeastern,” the group said in its statement.

Members of FSJP who were present at the encampment said in the statement they observed it to be “peaceful, orderly and well-maintained” and condemned the administration’s decision to arrest the protesters.

“The choice to arrest protesters on Northeastern grounds betrays the university’s commitment to keep all of its students safe — including from the police,” the statement read.

FSJP said they were “shocked” at the administration’s statement concerning the arrests, which said that “the use of virulent antisemitic slurs, including ‘Kill the Jews,’ crossed the line.” The organization cited online videos and a WGBH reporter’s eyewitness account of the the phrase being said by a pro-Israel counter protester.

“Given the incendiary nature of the university’s allegation of antisemitism, we would expect the university to have sought verification before making a public statement,” FSJP wrote before calling on Northeastern to drop all charges against arrested students. “Attributing such a phrase to protesters was gravely irresponsible and we call on the university to issue a retraction and an apology.”

FSJP ended its statement by affirming the right of Northeastern’s community to be free of harassment and disavowing discriminatory behavior.

“We are proud to stand by our students, the next generation of leaders, as they engage in courageous acts of peaceful protest and activism.”

All students released from jail, Huskies for a Free Palestine says — 3:00 p.m.

The exterior of Nashua Street Jail. HFP posted a statement on an Instagram story around 3 p.m. that said all students who were arrested Saturday morning and brought to Nashua Street Jail have been released. (Marta Hill)

All students who were arrested Saturday morning and brought to Nashua Street Jail have been released, according to a statement Huskies for a Free Palestine posted on its Instagram story around 3 p.m.

Arrests at the Centennial Common encampment began at approximately 7 a.m. Saturday. Roughly 100 individuals were detained, according to the university, and while some remained in Shillman Hall and were eventually released, others were transported to jail in Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department vans. 

Huskies for a Free Palestine also asked Instagram followers to pause donations to the bail fund that had been set up to pay for protesters’ release. 

“Our community has been extremely generous these last few days,” the story post read. “But as of now, there is no need for funds for bail or legal fees and we have more than enough to reimburse organizers for purchases made for the encampment.”

Northeastern calls execution of returning campus operations to normal “flawless.” Students disagree. — 12:38 p.m.

Two people hang a “no trespassing” sign on the barricade constructed around Centennial Common. Police remained present after the encampment was cleared. (Annika Sunkara)

Northeastern said campus had been “fully secured” by 11:30 a.m. Saturday and “all campus operations have returned to normal” in a statement posted to their Instagram and X accounts around 12:30 p.m.

The university said “admissions tours are taking place” and graduating students are on campus “posing for photos with their families.” 

“We want to thank NUPD, our Student Life staff and the university’s external partners for their flawless execution this morning,” the statement said.

Students strongly disagreed with the university’s evaluation. 

“I mean, things obviously aren’t back to normal,” said Colin Sutherland, a graduating civil engineering major. “Centennial is blocked off, pretty much every building is locked. … I am just surprised that they cleared everything out from the one provocateur.”

Other students expressed similar sentiments, with some saying the university is mainly focused on promoting its reputation. 

“I think it’s so tone-deaf that they would also use us graduating as an excuse to clear them out,” said Poon Singhatiraj, a graduating fifth-year international affairs major. “Obviously, I don’t think they really care. They just wanted to present an image on campus that I think visiting families and stuff like that would want. And so I think that the university just cares a lot about image, and I think that the statement speaks to that a lot, and it’s sad.”

Tyler Johnson, a second-year electrical engineering major, said he was not surprised by how the university handled the encampment.  

“I think the university’s response is pretty obvious,” Johnson said. “Obviously, I don’t agree with it but … Raytheon Amphitheater is right here, obviously Northeastern is heavily invested in the military industrial complex. So them shutting it down is really no surprise, but it’s still disappointing and I mean, I walked by and it was relatively peaceful.”

The university’s Saturday afternoon statement said the “community is enjoying the beautiful Boston weather,” which some students found insensitive given the weight of the events that had occurred Saturday morning.

“I can’t believe they’re like ‘Oh it’s a beautiful day,’” said Erin Stark, a second-year mechanical engineering major. “I don’t care that it’s a beautiful day. There’s something important going on on all campuses, and I don’t think that the students on campus right now care about the tours and everything. … I think this just shows the community coming together for Palestine, and that’s something that the universities should want to show their tours.”

Editor’s Note: Poon Singhatiraj formerly served as The News’ deputy opinion editor from September 2020 to December 2021.

Video footage reveals ‘Kill the Jews’ remark used to explain police intervention made by pro-Israel counter protester in provocation — 12:15 p.m.

Pro-Israel counter protesters hold the flag of Israel at the encampment. Footage taken Friday night revealed that it was a pro-Israel student demonstrator who said “Kill the Jews.” (Jessica Xing)

Footage taken late Friday night of a tense confrontation between pro-Palestine demonstrators and pro-Israel counter-protesters at the encampment revealed it was a pro-Israel student demonstrator who said “Kill the Jews,” asking the pro-Palsestine demonstrators “anybody on board; anybody for that?”

Hours later, the same statement was used by Northeastern as a part of the reason for clearing out the “Gaza solidarity encampment” on Centennial Common, which resulted in the detainment of over 100 individuals.

“The use of virulent antisemitic slurs, including ‘Kill the Jews,’ crossed the line,” the university’s statement said. “We cannot tolerate this kind of hate on our campus.”

“Earlier this morning the Northeastern University Police Department (NUPD) — in cooperation with local law enforcement partners — began clearing an unauthorized encampment on the university’s Boston campus,” the rest of the statement reads. “What began as a student demonstration two days ago, was infiltrated by professional organizers with no affiliation to Northeastern.

Multiple media personnel, including two Huntington News editors, were present during the verbal altercation and confirmed they heard someone say “Kill the Jews,” but could not confirm who. Huntington News reporters, who covered nearly the entire duration of the encampment, did not hear the statement repeated at any other point during the demonstration.

Soon after the university published its response, HFP posted in a statement on Instagram saying “counter protestors expressing Zionist and hate speech sentiments tried to instigate people to engage in confrontation and spread further hate speech.” 

The video footage, originally posted on X by Working Mass, a Democratic Socialists of America media outlet covering Massachusetts, reveals two Jewish students holding an Israeli flag shouted the “kill the Jews” after pro-Palestine demonstrators conducted a “mic check” — a call and response technique used to focus attention on an organizer. 

The two pro-Israel counter protesters then asked the pro-Palestinian demonstrators if they agreed, saying “anybody on board; anybody for that?” The crowd of pro-Palestine protesters immediately started shouting over them. 

The video shows part of a tense, 30-minute standoff, where pro-Israel counterprotesters entered the encampment and eventually verbally clashed with pro-Palestine demonstrators. Northeastern police eventually escorted the counter protesters out of the encampment, but told them they would not be arrested if they returned. The two counter protesters immediately returned to the encampment. 

Tori Bedford, a GBH reporter who was on campus during the altercation, said on X she heard the statement “said by a counter-protester holding an Israeli flag, seemingly as a provocative joke in response to the group’s pro-Palestine chants.”

In response to questions regarding the video footage and reports that pro-Israel counter protesters said the statement, Vice President for Communications Renata Nyul said the “fact that the phrase ‘Kill the Jews’ was shouted on our campus is not in dispute.”

“The Boston Globe, a trusted news organization, reported it as fact. There is also substantial video evidence. Any suggestion that repulsive antisemitic comments are sometimes acceptable depending on the context is reprehensible. That language has no place on any university campus,” Nyul said.

But the Globe’s reporting on Friday night appears to either incorrectly or fail to identify who said “kill the jews” during the verbal altercation. 

“At one point, a person called out, ‘Kill the Jews,’ while others yelled, ‘No right to exist,’ at the two counter protesters holding the Israeli flag,” the Globe’s article reads.

A Huntington News reporter who observed the altercation confirmed that pro-Palestine demonstrators said “no right to exist,” likely referring to the belief that Israel does not have a right to exist.

The two individuals who can be seen chanting “Kill the Jews” and asking if the pro-Palestine demonstrators agreed did not appear to be in the encampment Saturday morning when it was swept by police.

Huskies for a Free Palestine responds to university statement explaining encampment sweep — 11:00 a.m.

Centennial appears completely cleared out after 9:00 a.m. The remains of the encampment were fully removed Saturday morning. (Annika Sunkara)

In a Saturday morning statement, Huskies for a Free Palestine, or HFP, said Northeastern’s statement explaining why police swept the encampment contained an “entirely false and fabricated narrative that members of our encampment engaged in hate speech early this morning.”

“Last night, counter protestors expressing Zionist and hate speech sentiments tried to instigate people to engage in confrontation and spread further hate speech,” the statement said. “We did not chant any hate speech at any point.”

The university said the Saturday morning sweep, which employed campus, city and state police, was conducted, at least in part, because protesters “crossed a line” with the “use of virulent antisemitic slurs, including ‘Kill the Jews.’”

But video footage confirms it was a pro-Israel counterprotester at the encampment holding an Israeli flag who said “kill the Jews” Friday night. The remark appeared to be a provocation. “Anybody on board?” the counter protester said after making the comment. Protesters chanted in a call and response to not engage with the counter protesters.

Renata Nyul, vice president for communication, said in a follow up statement to The News that “the fact that the phrase … was shouted on our campus is not in dispute.”

“Any suggestion that repulsive antisemitic comments are sometimes acceptable depending on the context is reprehensible,” Nyul wrote.

Huskies for a Free Palestine’s statement said they reject anti semitism and hate speech. 

“As a collective, we have never condoned any violence upon our Jewish members, and we never will. We do not condone bigotry or hate speech or any kind”

The statement emphasized that protesters remained peaceful throughout the two-day encampment. It also refuted the administration’s claim that the encampment was “infiltrated by professional organizers with no affiliation to Northeastern.”

“No one was hired, [the protest] was comprised primarily of students,” the statement read.

Arrested protesters brought to Nashua Street Jail — 10:30 a.m.

The exterior of Nashua Street Jail. Police brought arrested protesters to the jail starting around 9:40 a.m. (Marta Hill)

Police brought protesters arrested at the encampment Saturday morning to the Nashua Street Jail to be processed. Starting around 9:40 a.m., those arrested started being released in small groups. Supporters from groups such as the Massachusetts Bail Fund greeted them as they were released and provided resources and food. 

The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department did not immediately respond for comment and The News could not confirm how many people were arrested, how many of those arrested were Northeastern students, or the dates of students’ court appearances.

Note from the editor – 9:37 a.m. 

The News is aware of possible video footage and first-hand accounts regarding the “kill the Jews” statement the university cited in its statement explaining police intervention. Two Huntington News reporters at the scene last night heard someone say the statement, but could not identify who said it. We will provide information as it becomes available.

Police clear out remains of encampment – 9:30 a.m. 

Police cleared out Centennial Common at 9:00 a.m. They collected vacant tents, signs and other debris scattered across the Common following the three-day-long encampment. 

Remaining demonstrators cheered as police continued to leave the area. State troopers remained on the sidewalk near Centennial Common facing protesters who attempted to prevent Sheriff vans from leaving campus earlier this morning.  

The barricades around the Common remained up.

Northeastern says 100 detained, provides updated statement – 8:30 a.m. 

BPD officers start to leave after detaining approximately 100 individuals. Protesters who refused to disclose their affiliation were arrested. (Jessica Xing)

In an updated statement to The News from Renata Nyul, vice president for communication, the university said that “approximately 100 individuals were detained by police” this morning on Centennial Common. 

Nyul said that students who produced valid Northeastern ID were released and would face disciplinary proceedings within the university but no legal charges. Those who refused to disclose their affiliation were arrested.

Sheriff vans use alternate route to transport arrested protesters to Nashua Street Jail – 8:00 a.m. 

After protesters forming a human chain initially blocked several Sheriff vans from leaving campus, police found an alternate route to exit campus by driving down Leon Street and going around Ryder Hall.

Boston Police cars and vans blocked demonstrators’ access to Leon Street, only allowing access to regular traffic and police vehicles coming through campus. Protesters were instructed to stay off the road. 

Approximately 100 students remained on campus chanting “We’re just students” and “Good cops quit.”

Protesters form human chain, block vans containing arrested students from leaving campus – 7:40 a.m. 

Police began to move protesters into Sheriff vans at around 7:35 a.m. As dozens of protesters in zip ties sat on the curb of Centennial, some of the Sheriff vans began pulling away from the parking lot — but were blocked by more protesters who linked arms to block the parking lot exit. 

Other onlookers began to collect the names as well as the phones of students in the human chain.

Protesters continued to chant “Why are you in riot gear?” and “I don’t see no riot here.”

Sheriff vans are moving arrested protesters to the Nashua Street Jail.

Arrested protesters led into Shillman, Sheriff vans stationed behind at back of building – 7:20 a.m. 

As onlookers banged on doors to Shillman Hall, arrested protesters who were being detained inside the building appeared to shout their identifying information to the onlookers outside. 

Some of the arrested protesters, placed in zip ties, were seated on the curb on Centennial Common as they awaited movement to Shillman Hall. Many of them continued to chant as they were walked into the building by police. 

Officers have continued to remove tents from the encampment as student arrests were made. Several vacant tents remain standing on Centennial Common.

Arrests begin after roughly 50 police officers deployed from Ruggles — 7:00 a.m.

Police in riot gear began arresting protesters at the encampment at 7:00 a.m. after roughly 50 police officers who had been waiting in Ruggles Station emerged and surrounded the encampment. 

Protesters were led into Shillman Hall by police in zip ties. They were then led away from the scene through the back entrance of the building. Several Sheriff vans were waiting in the parking lot of the building complex housing Lake, Holmes, Meserve and Nightingale halls nearby. 

Protesters do not appear to be resisting arrest. At least one protester was carried off the scene. 

Onlookers continued to chant “Free Palestine” as arrests took place.

Protester inside encampment appears injured after falling, police do not allow external medic to enter encampment — 6:45 a.m.

After a protester appeared to fall and sustain an injury, a medic attempted to enter the barricade but police did not allow them entry. This was met with chants from onlookers to “let the medic in.”

Instead, firefighters arrived on the scene several minutes later. After speaking to firefighters, the individual appears to be OK.

University issues statement in response to clearing of Centennial encampment – 6:25 a.m.

Renata Nyul, vice president for university communications, watches the encampment. Nyul issued a statement to The News at 6:25 a.m. (Jessica Xing)

Renata Nyul, vice president for communications for the university, issued a statement to The News in response to the clearing of the encampment at 6:25 a.m.

“Earlier this morning the Northeastern University Police Department (NUPD) — in cooperation with local law enforcement partners — began clearing an unauthorized encampment on the university’s Boston campus,” Nyul said. “What began as a student demonstration two days ago, was infiltrated by professional organizers with no affiliation to Northeastern. Last night, the use of virulent antisemitic slurs, including ‘Kill the Jews,’ crossed the line. We cannot tolerate this kind of hate on our campus.”

Police remove elements of protesters’ barricade – 6:10 a.m.

Police officers entered the encampment and began removing chairs, water coolers and signs at 6:10 a.m. Officers packed the chairs into Olympia moving trucks. Protesters remained sitting and linked in a circle around the encampment. 

Protesters continued to chant “We keep us safe.” Spectators chanted at protesters to “stand up” and “lock arms” at which point the protesters stood up in a ring around the encampment. 

Around 40 police officers surround Centennial encampment, erect barricades around the Common – 5:30 a.m. 

Approximately 40 police officers — a combination of Boston, Northeastern and State police — surrounded Centennial Common and instructed protesters to move off the quad at 5:30 a.m. Saturday.

“When officers approach, do not resist” an officer announced to protesters.

Onlookers were instructed to move off campus by police in riot gear lined up on Leon Street who were blocking access to the area surrounding the Common. 

“Off the quad, let’s go,” an Northeastern University Police Department, or NUPD, officer said to onlookers. “Please, for your safety, let’s move.”

Police erected barricades brought to campus by multiple Olympia moving trucks. Organizers had speculated that a moving company “had been hired to assist state police overnight” in an Instagram post Friday evening. 

Protesters inside of the barricade’s perimeter linked arms and continued to chant “Who do you protect?” and “Who do you serve?” in response to the increased police presence. 

Several members of The News’ staff were asked to move outside the barricade.

Protesters prepare for imminent police raid – 4:00 a.m. 

Protesters were woken up early Saturday after photos of a moving truck were sent in a HFP Telegram channel, sparking concerns of an imminent police raid. 

“Be ready. Stand strong, hold fast, protect each other, don’t let them intimidate you,” organizers sent in Telegram messages obtained by The News. “Word has been received about a raid on the camp at 4 a.m.”

As of 4:30 a.m., protesters were up, linking arms and chanting. The number of demonstrators in the encampment had decreased significantly since a peak of more than 200 at midnight; by 5 a.m., only about 100 protesters remained in the camp within the circle of chairs. 

After being woken up, protesters, continually being updated on police movement, began chanting. They sat down, linking arms, at about 4:45 a.m.

“Gaza, Gaza make us proud, turn the IOF around,” protesters chanted, along with “Free Palestine” and “Shut it down.”

More than 30 unmarked State Police vehicles arrived near International Village at around 4:45 a.m.,The News confirmed. In the Telegram chat, organizers warned protesters of Boston and State Police equipped with riot gear and zipties. The News was able to confirm the presence of multiple Northeastern administrators and several police officers in riot gear near Shillman Hall, Snell Library and Holmes Hall.  

No police officers were on the Common as of 5:17  a.m., and only a few state troopers looked on from the sidewalk. 

As encampment enters third day, over 200 protesters remain at Centennial  1:30 a.m. 

The pro-Palestine encampment at Centennial Common continued to grow in the early hours of its third day, with around 200 jacket-wearing protesters remaining on the common around 1:30 a.m. Saturday.

Verbal clashes with counter protesters have ended, but demonstrators, expecting a potential sweep of the encampment, remain on edge. Some lay in the several tents on the common, but many protesters remain standing up, speaking with other demonstrators.

A few Northeastern and State police remain on scene, but encampment organizers expect several more — telling protesters at an 8:30 p.m. meeting they are anticipating police to clear Centennial some time tonight.

Friday, April 26

Protesters’ verbal clash on encampment escalates, pro-Israel demonstrators return after being escorted off Centennial — 11:30 p.m.

Pro-Israel and pro-Palestine protesters continued to clash after pro-Israel protesters entered the middle of the encampment holding an Israeli flag. Two pro-Israel students stood on chairs holding the flag facing Centennial Common.

Over 200 people were estimated to be on the Common as demonstrators traded chants back and forth. Police present at the encampment site did not intervene.

Pro-Palestine demonstrators played instruments as they chanted “Shut it down” and “No more money for Israel’s crimes.” Pro-Israel protesters chanted “Free the hostages” in between pro-Palestine protesters’ chants of “Free, free Palestine.”

At one point, an organizer told people gathered around the pro-Israel protesters to not engage with counter-protesters. The pro-Israel protesters looked behind them and sarcastically told the circle of demonstrators gathered around the chairs to “Be sheep” and “Listen to their leader.”

Groups of onlookers grew throughout the protest. 

Police presence was relatively small compared to Thursday. About eight police officers — both NUPD and state troopers — stood watching the protest on Centennial. 

Pro-Israel protesters standing off the Common — about 10 — were loudly chanting “Free our hostages.”

NUPD officers escorted two pro-Israel demonstrators away from Centennial. Police said that if the pro-Israel demonstrators were to return to the encampment, they would not be arrested.

After speaking to Northeastern police, pro-Israel protesters returned to their spot atop chairs, face-to-face with pro-Palestine protesters.

Tensions rise at the encampment — 10:30 p.m.

Pro-Palestine and pro-Israel protesters clashed again as demonstrators made preparations for the night. 

Pro-Israel protesters, who have been at the protest for several hours, entered the middle of the encampment wrapped in Israeli flags and appeared to be talking to pro-Palestine demonstrators. 

Protesters chanted multiple times, including chants of “Intifada.”

A pro-Israel protester standing outside of Centennial Common was heard saying “That’s antisemitic.” A demonstrator in the encampment said “I’m Jewish,” to which the pro-Israeli protester replied, “Do you want to kill yourself?”

Chairs on the lawn formed a tight circle in the middle of Centennial. Over 70 people stood outside of the chairs linking arms, while some 30 formed a tight group inside the chairs. 

Fearing police confiscation, HFP began collecting demonstrators’ phones.

Protesters comment on safety plans ahead of anticipated sweep — 9:30 p.m. 

Protesters prepared the encampment ahead of the prospective sweep by discussing arrest scenarios and moving empty tents to the center of Centennial Common to create a chair-to-chair outer barrier. 

The News asked demonstrators to comment on the preparations. 

One demonstrator, who was granted anonymity due to fear of retaliation, said they were “locking up our valuables, signing up for the bail form and bundling up, keeping warm.”

Another demonstrator, who was also granted anonymity due to fear of retaliation, said they were “writing the lawyer and the bail teams’ numbers on our arms.” 

“We’re also splitting up between people who are willing to be arrested and people who aren’t,” the second demonstrator said. 

They explained that because some students have documentation statuses that may put them at higher risk if arrested, protesters are grouping these students together, and have warned them to leave the encampment if police conduct a sweep to avoid arrest.

Protesters gather to prepare for rumored early-morning sweep — 8:30 p.m.

An organizer gathered protesters to make announcements ahead of the coming evening and early morning amid concerns of an overnight sweep of the encampment.

At the meeting, organizers said they have a “credible source” who informed them that state police hired a moving company to collect protesters’ belongings at the planned raid and sweep of the encampment.

A university spokesperson told The News the university does not comment on operation details related to public safety. 

The organizer warned protesters to think about their valuables ahead of a prospective sweep. They asked protesters to call their friends and people they trust. 

“We won yesterday, they backed off because we are fucking powerful, we can win again today,” the organizer said, referring to the retreat of Boston police officers, who had surrounded the encampment for roughly half an hour. Organizers emphasized the need for people to bear witness to the sweep, asking protesters to stick around at the encampment for as long as possible. 

The protesters plan to run lockdown drills ahead of the rumored sweep. They are moving their encampment into tighter quarters in the center of Centennial Common in preparation. 

Power to Centennial shut off — 6:50 p.m.

Organizers announced to encampment demonstrators that power to Centennial Common had been shut off, according to multiple protesters.

The encampment had several charging stations set up at outlet posts around Centennial to charge phones and other devices. 

The News confirmed at around 6:50 p.m. the power to the Common was shut off.

“This was driven by safety concerns for those involved in the demonstration and everyone else using Centennial Quad,” Renata Nyul, the vice president of communications for the university, told The News. “You may have noticed for example wires running across sidewalks, connected to power sources. Easy to trip over.”

Pro-Israel and pro-Palestine protesters clash — 6:15 p.m.

A pro-Israel student stands in the encampment while wrapped in the flag of Israel. Pro-Israel students entered the encampment to converse with protesters at around 6:15 p.m. (Curtis DeSmith)

At about 6:15 p.m., the pro-Israel students who had been at Centennial for several hours approached some demonstrators at the encampment. The students, who were holding Israeli flags, were heard saying that they want to have a “conversation” with the encampment demonstrators and that “dialogue helps.”

The demonstrators said they did not want to have a conversation. 

A leader started leading demonstrators at the encampment in a chant. 

“Resistance is justified when people are occupied,” pro-Palestine protesters chanted. 

The pro-Israel students were heard saying that they would feel threatened by chants of “From the river to the sea” and “Globalize the Intifada.”

The people in the encampment then led chants of “From the river to the sea” and “Globalize the Intifada.”

The Jewish protester said “Say that to my face” multiple times, to which the pro-Palestine demonstrators chanted, “Globalize the Intifada.”

The pro-Israeli students chanted back “From the river to the sea, Petah Tikvah will be free.” 

Petah Tikvah is a small city in Israel. One of the pro-Israeli protesters told The News that the call is a counter-chant that became popular on Instagram. 

Buildings along Centennial Common to close — 5:45 p.m.

Police officers close up Ryder Hall on Friday night. Ryder Hall and Shillman Hall were closed to the public at around 5:45 p.m. (Curtis DeSmith)

Northeastern University police officers entered Ryder and Shillman Halls and announced the buildings are closing to the public. Since Thursday morning, protesters have been using surrounding buildings to access bathrooms.

Students perform dabke dance, recite Asr prayer — 5:30 p.m. 

After protesters at the encampment performed a series of dances to music in the middle of Centennial, a student announced they would begin teaching the crowd the steps of the dabke dance, a traditional Arab dance that translates literally to “stomping the feet.” 

Students lined the exterior of the encampment and began dancing in a circle, following the instructions of the Boston Dabke Troupe, a group of college students who teach dabke in the Boston area. A joyous traditional dance, dabke, has roots and is commonly performed in Palestine. 

Shortly after dancing, about a dozen students lined up to perform the Asr prayer, one of five mandatory daily prayers in Islam, as several students from the encampment observed. 

Students prepare for anticipated police intervention — 4 p.m.

As students at the encampment continued the demonstration relatively quietly throughout the afternoon, the rest of Northeastern’s campus was lively. Students were seen picking up their caps and gowns for the 2024 commencement ceremony, and trees were decorated in honor of 2024 graduates.

A student at the encampment made an announcement instructing protesters to do a personal  “risk assessment” at about 3 p.m. The student said that those who may face more severe consequences if arrested — for example if they have prior charges or are not a citizen — should leave if police threaten arrest. 

Everyone at the encampment was also encouraged to fill out a bail support form, presumably so HFP could help with bail costs if protesters get arrested. 

The student speaking emphasized that any decision of police action would come from Northeastern administration, eliciting shouts of “Shame.”

Demonstrators then ran through several “link up” drills, where they linked arms around the Common and in smaller groups around tents to protect the encampment in case police approached. 

Throughout the afternoon, students made zines, painted signs and made art. Adirondack chairs on the common formed a border around the encampment. Almost all chairs had signs taped to them condemning Northeastern and the Israel-Gaza war and listing the demands of protesters, which included disclosure of financial investments, divestment from companies with ties to Israel, and denouncement of what they said is Israel’s genocide in Palestine. 

Several students from other schools — including from Boston University — said they joined the encampment on Friday. 

Sam Goldberg, a high school junior who was touring campus, watched the protest from the sidewalk of Centennial. 

“It’s not really turning me away [from applying], just because it’s happening all over the country,” Goldberg said, adding that he had seen an encampment at Tufts but that it “wasn’t as big as this one.”

Students with parents — some who appeared to be moving out and some who were touring campus — gazed at the encampment and sometimes talked to demonstrators or onlookers.

Small cohort of Jewish students visit Centennial, advocate for action against encampment  — 2:45 p.m.

A group of at least six Jewish students made their way to Centennial Common Friday afternoon to represent their community and encourage the university to take action against the Northeastern encampment.

“We want our campus back,” said Winston Alcufron, a fifth-year political science and philosophy combined major and active member of Chabad. He explained that there are two groups, Students for Justice in Palestine and HFP, and said the latter is not a registered student group and does not have authorized access to protest. 

“Yesterday they were chanting things like, ‘From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,’ and ‘Globalize the intifada,’” Alcufron said. “We definitely interpret that, unequivocally, as a call for genocide against our people and an eradication of the Israeli people.”

Gabby Kislin, second-year business administration major who holds leadership positions in Hillel, Huskies for Israel and Chabad, told The News she thought that if Jewish students set up tents, they would be in trouble.

“It always feels like there’s different rules that are being followed for us versus these other groups,” Kislin said.

Alcufron and Kislin said they want the university to take action against the encampment immediately.

“We’d like to see the students be dispersed, we don’t want any violence whatsoever — we don’t support that actually,” Alcufron said. “We saw what happened at Emerson and we do not condone that at all.”

Demonstrators at the encampment who watched the people with Israeli flags from afar said they didn’t see a reason for them to be there. 

“This is also our campus, and this is what it takes to [call out Northeastern],” a protester, who was granted anonymity due to safety concerns, said at the encampment. 

“I bet you when other college kids were sitting on Centennial just reading books, but as soon as it’s something like this, now it’s an issue,” another protester who asked to remain anonymous said.

Guest speaker from Warm Up Boston speaks to demonstrators  — 2:30 p.m.

Miguel Maron poses for a headshot. Maron gave a speech Friday afternoon at the demonstration calling for a liberated Palestine. (Annika Sunkara)

Demonstrators gathered around guest speaker Miguel Maron from Warm Up Boston, a support program for unhoused Bostonians, for a speech Friday afternoon that called for a liberated Palestine and encouraged protesters to get involved with the organization. As chief harm reductionist, Maron said he is largely in charge of creating programs for services and providing harm reduction resources. Though he was the only one who gave a speech, three other members of Warm Up Boston were also present.  

“We have a few members who are students here, who help us with our weekly [distributions], and so I was invited as part of a wider initiative to show solidarity with the people of Palestine and the work this encampment is doing,” Maron told The News. 

He bridged the connection between patterns he views in Palestine and issues that face unhoused people in Boston.  

“There is this overarching struggle that we are a part of against forces of imperialism, chauvinism, abroad in places like Palestine and Gaza but also in the streets of Boston where people are also in a way under siege by the tent ban,” Maron said. “But also just a history of a lack of services and a lack of real care towards our unhoused community.” 

Northeastern has ‘game plan’ for protest, administration says — 2:00 p.m.

As protesters continued to eat food and mill around the encampment site on Centennial Common, several university administrators including Dean of Students Chong Kim-Wong, Vice President of External Affairs Mike Armini, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs David Madigan and Senior Vice Chancellor for Student Life Madeleine Estabrook stood off to the side observing. 

Armini told The News that administration and NUPD have a “game plan” for handling the encampment, which will take place sometime later today. He did not disclose details of the plan to The News.

Armini and Vice President of Communications Renata Nyul told The News state troopers are deployed on campus due to protocol for protests on urban campuses. Armini emphasized that the campus is secure and that there are no threats to student safety.

In an Instagram post by HFP, protesters called on students to contact administrators to “end partnerships with genocidal companies” and “call for an immediate, permanent ceasefire.”

Boston City Councilors respond to encampments across Boston — 12:30 p.m.

Benjamin Weber, Boston City Councilor for District 6, released a statement Friday in response to the encampments across Boston universities.

“If we as a city in conjunction with universities cannot find a way to allow for peaceful protests, we are in a sorry state,” Weber wrote in the statement posted on his X, formerly known as Twitter, account at about 12:30 p.m.

“I agree with my colleagues – Council President Ruthzee Louijeune and Councilor Henry Santana – that the arrests of students at Emerson College and the threat of arrests of students at Northeastern University are highly troubling and that any charges resulting from the arrests of political protesters should be dropped,” Weber wrote. 

“It is our collective responsibility to ensure that students who choose to exercise their right to protest are met with dignity and respect,” Louijeune wrote in her statement posted on X Thursday.

Santana reflected on the trauma the Black community has experienced with police in the past; he said that the videos from recent protests resurface these traumas. 

“I will be continuing these conversations in the coming days, to ensure the City of Boston can both protect our public safety, and be a national leader in defending our democracy,” Santana wrote in his statement on X. 

Jewish student displays Israeli flag around Centennial — 10:30 a.m. 

During the quiet morning at the encampment, Benjamin Levin, a graduating mechanical engineering and computer science double major, skateboarded in circles around Centennial Common with an Israeli flag on his back.

“I’m here to represent the Jewish and Israeli community,” Levin said.

He said that the Northeastern Code of Student Conduct requires organizations to book events on campus through official means, and that HFP did not do this. 

“I’m just trying to be as visible as possible, and make sure that my community is as visible as possible,” Levin said.

He expressed his support for peaceful protests like the encampment, but reiterated that this protest is breaking the rules by not officially booking the Common for the event.

“I haven’t seen enough action from the administration, so I’m here to represent my community and make sure that action is taken,” Levin said.

His display did not elicit a visible reaction from members of the encampment, who were eating breakfast and sitting around Centennial Common. 

Second day of encampment begins with breakfast, community — 9:30 a.m.

Five Massachusetts State Police officers huddled off the side of the Centennial encampment as dozens of protesters began their days conversing and enjoying refreshments.

“At the request of NUPD we are standing by to assist them if and however they need. Any decisions on any actions taken will be made by the university police,” Dave Procopio, director of media communications for the Massachusetts State Police said in an emailed statement to GBH News.

Dozens of students in more than 20 tents within the encampment slowly began waking up from a mostly quiet night at about 9 a.m. 

Some students mingled while others appeared to be doing work. In the middle of the camp, a table was set up with a sign reading “Open & hot food here,” with a variety of fruit and snacks as well as scores of drink coolers and bottled water for the taking.

About five NUPD officers stood on the Common observing. Someone appeared to have brought Dunkin’ to the officers. 

About five state troopers stood closer to Ruggles. NUPD officers and state troopers were seen walking in and out of a room in Shillman Hall throughout the night. 

At one point, a state trooper asked demonstrators to remove the Palestinian flag hanging from the Centennial Common sign because he didn’t want to “touch anyone’s property.” He said if students don’t remove it he would fold it up himself and give it to demonstrators. Students quickly agreed and removed the flag. 

A protester who was granted anonymity due to fear of retaliation said there were a few tense moments throughout the night. At one point, an officer thought the demonstrators were going to touch the U.S. flag on the Common and asked students to move away, the organizers said. 

The student also said there was a person with an Israeli flag at some point during the night having a “debate” with demonstrators.

“There was some guy here who was debating, but they were genuinely trying to see eye to eye, which was really good to see,” the anonymous protester said. 

Though it was cold throughout the night, the community came together to share blankets and resources, the student said. People took shifts throughout the night to monitor the encampment, but the student said he didn’t know whether they were Northeastern students or not. 

“We’re all part of the community — there’s no line between Northeastern and outside community members, which is the best part about this,” the student said. 

Thursday, April 25

Students settle in for a night on Centennial Common — 10:00 p.m.

After 14 hours on Centennial Common, approximately 100 students remained at the encampment, fighting the cold by wrapping themselves in blankets and passing around hand warmers.

As some students climbed into their tents for the night, a group of protesters gathered off to the side of the Common to learn safety guidelines through a marshall training. 

Another group of students began chalking the Common, writing statistics about the destruction in Gaza and the names of Palestinians killed by the Israeli military during the conflict. 

Red handprints were also left around the border of Centennial. The News was unable to confirm who placed the handprints on the concrete, and organizers of the encampment said they did not endorse this activity. Organizers said that they told at least one protester to stop placing the handprints because they did not want to “escalate” the situation.

At 9:12 p.m., several Jewish Northeastern students hung Israeli flags next to the Palestinian flag on Centennial Common. One of the Jewish students was Matthew Garchik, a third-year business administration and computer science combined major.

“Private universities have a certain level of protection to do what they want, stop what they want, moderate their private property,” Garchik said.

Garchik said he didn’t hang Israeli flags for the first few hours he was observing the encampment but he encountered people “ready to argue” and debate. He attributed this to the kippah he was wearing.

“I think it is important for people to see that there are people who disagree — this is not the entire student body,” Garchik said.

In a Thursday night Instagram post, HFP asked community members to “take the night shift” and watch over the encampment overnight.

At night, encampments are at the highest risk of being swept up, and protesters are at the highest risk of being brutalized, all at the hands of the police,” the post read.

The student group sought at least 30 people for several 2-hour shifts, which are scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. and end at 8 a.m. Responsibilities include “keeping watch at the encampment perimeter and notifying the camp if police enforcement approaches,” according to the form linked in the Instagram post. 

Protesters also ran a drill in which students practiced “linking up” and forming a protective circle around Centennial as well as around individual tents to prepare for the possibility of police sweeping the encampment during the night. Organizers said they were concerned a sweep might occur tonight due to Boston police presence earlier today that led to protesters linking arms around the Common. 

Students in encampment begin Passover Seder — 7:45 p.m.

Around 30 student demonstrators on Centennial Common encampment began celebrating the fourth night of Passover with a Seder around 7:45 p.m. Thursday.

Both Jewish and non-Jewish students sat on a blue tarp on Centennial around a plastic seder plate, reading prayers from their phones. Organizers told The News that the service was initially supposed to be led by a rabbi and start at 7 p.m., but students ended up leading the Seder themselves after a 45-minute delay.

The group sat circled around a small, plastic candle and an aluminum container with charoset and other traditional, Passover food​. During the student-led service, participants discussed the story of Passover, the meaning of the Afikomen and shared plastic cups with grape juice.

The service lasted about an hour before participants started eating, and food was offered to anyone who wanted.

Berklee College of Music protesters enter Northeastern’s encampment
— 7:15 p.m.

Student protesters from Berklee College of Music’s chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine entered Northeastern’s encampment on Centennial Common at 7:15 p.m. after marching down Massachusetts Avenue. Berklee protesters were met with cheers from Northeastern protesters. 

Piper Keagle, a first-year music therapy major and member of the group, said Berklee organizers were struggling with low attendance at their own protests until the encampments began in recent weeks. “Since it’s happening a lot in Massachusetts, Harvard and here, people are wanting to become active,” Keagle said. “We decided to come here and show our support.”

Keagle said it’s difficult to organize an outdoor protest at Berklee because their campus is urban and has no green space. “We came here to Northeastern once we heard about the protest,”  Keagle said. 

Keagle said supporters joined the Berklee students as they walked toward Northeastern’s campus. 

Demonstrators blocked traffic during their walk from Berklee and received encouragement from pedestrians and drivers on the road who were cheering and honking in support. 

Local leaders respond to Northeastern encampment, student protests — 7:00 p.m.

Massachusetts and Boston politicians are reacting after pro-Palestine student protests and encampments swept prominent universities across Greater Boston.

In a statement, Rep. Ayanna Pressley expressed support for the peaceful protests occurring across universities and called for law enforcement to “exercise restraint.” 

“I am grateful to students nationwide and across the Massachusetts 7th [congressional district] — at Emerson, Northeastern, MIT, Tufts, Boston University, Harvard, and more — who are raising their voices and putting their bodies on the line to press for action to save lives in Gaza,” she said in the statement

City Councilor Tania Fernandes Anderson also spoke out in support of the peaceful protests, citing the arrests at Emerson and the zip ties at Northeastern held by the Boston police.

“The fact of the matter is, we should be saluting and encouraging our college students who are speaking out, not punishing them,” Anderson wrote in a statement posted to a private X, formerly Twitter, account.

Mayor Michelle Wu spoke out in support of Boston Police after 108 people were arrested at an Emerson College encampment early Thursday morning. The arrests occurred after protesters “clashed” with the police as they were clearing the encampment, WCVB reported.

“We have to be a city where everybody is safe. That is my primary mission,” Wu said to WCVB. “I know that events happening around the world are incredibly painful. We have to be a community where everybody can express their views safely.”

In a post on X, City Councilor Ed Flynn supported the clearing of the Emerson encampment, writing, “Public access can’t be blocked. Violations of city ordinances must be addressed. Tents in public right of ways must come down immediately.”

Protesters regroup for dinner and live music — 6:55 p.m. 

As the early evening rolled in, protesters transitioned into a more mellow mood, sitting on towels and enjoying sandwiches and plates of pasta. A group stood in the center of Centennial, listening on as two guitarists played original music.

Two tables were set up in the middle of Centennial Common, filled with a spread of naan, rice, salad, hummus and more. One protester told The News that dinner was paid for by donations. Protesters lined up behind the tables to fill their plates ahead of sundown.

Northeastern Hillel releases statement about on-campus protest — 6:30 p.m. 

Northeastern Hillel, a Jewish organization on campus, released a statement on Instagram Thursday evening expressing its support for Northeastern’s Jewish students after the establishment of the pro-Palestine encampment.

“Today’s events on campus, including a Pro Palestinian/Anti-Israel Protest and Encampment currently taking place, reflect a disturbing and problematic trend both nationally and on our own campus,” the statement reads.

Hillel emphasized its commitment to “ensuring the safety and wellbeing of [campus’] Jewish students and said it is working with the Northeastern University Police Department and campus administration toward this goal.

“Jewish students have the right to learn in a safe environment,” the statement reads. “No student should feel as though they must hide their full identity to experience our campus environment, or that their basic safety is jeopardized.” 

HFP holds informational meetings for protests ahead of sunset — 5:45 p.m. 

Organizers gathered protesters in the center of Centennial Common to instruct encampment participants on the plan for the night. They reminded protesters that wearing a mask is a top priority, for both COVID-19 safety and surveillance purposes. 

They reiterated that participants should avoid speaking to police, administration and the press.

Organizers also announced a catered dinner at 6:30 p.m. and a Passover Seder at 7:00 p.m. They invited protesters to attend tonight’s marshall training to learn to protect themselves and others.

They reminded protesters they are here in support of Palestine with a goal for Northeastern to divest all investments in and cut ties with Israeli companies and institutions. 

Organizers closed the meeting by asking protesters to invite their friends to stay the night on the Common. They finished with a “we keep us safe” chant. 

Centennial quiets down after Boston police retreat — 5:30 p.m.

After Boston police left Centennial at around 3 p.m., protesters quieted down. The group took a break from chanting and the crowd thinned out. Protesters shared food, ate and prayed. 

As sun disappeared from the Common, organizers gathered protesters to announce the plan for the evening. The mood on the Common became solemn — protesters checked their phones and sat down. While the crowd thinned out earlier this afternoon after reaching its peak around 3 p.m., protesters began to return and join the encampment.

University police started conducting mandatory Northeastern ID checks at around 5:15 p.m. to enter Shillman Hall. An NUPD officer near Centennial told The News that buildings in the surrounding area have been locked to ensure students can attend their finals. The News confirmed that Behrakis Health Sciences Center and Holmes Hall were locked; however, Ryder Hall was unlocked. 

Northeastern Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine release statement in support of protesters — 5:00 p.m.

Northeastern Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine, or FSJP, released a statement on Instagram at about 5 p.m. expressing support for demonstrators and demanding that Northeastern not use police force against students.

“We, the undersigned Northeastern University faculty and staff, affirm our solidarity with, and full support of, our Northeastern students, as well as the students on other university campuses, including MIT, Emerson College, Boston University and Tufts University, who are protesting Israel’s genocide in Gaza and the ongoing occupation of the West Bank and other Palestinian lands,” FSJP’s statement read. “We urge the administration not to act punitively against Northeastern students for engaging in peaceful protest and to uphold the principles of free expression and debate.”

FSJP was formed in early April by about 20 faculty and staff. In the letter declaring the group’s creation, FSJP called on the university to drop disciplinary action against students and called the Israeli’s actions in Gaza a “genocide.”

“We reject any attempts to discipline students or other members of the Northeastern community based on general assertions of ‘discomfort,’” the group said in its statement Thursday. “Particularly within the context of the ongoing genocide, and we adamantly oppose the use of disciplinary proceedings without concrete proof of verifiable facts of discrimination or harassment.”

NUPD officers and Northeastern administration told demonstrators at the encampment that if they couldn’t produce a Northeastern ID, they would be forced to leave campus. 

“Northeastern University can cement its position as a defender of academic freedoms by ensuring that peaceful student protesters will not be subjected to ad hoc disciplinary proceedings,” the letter read. “In the midst of the violence in Gaza and the deepening divides in the US, we call upon Northeastern University to set an example of ensuring robust academic and personal freedom.”

Several people were seen among protesters wearing white shirts reading “Northeastern faculty and staff support students” since the start of the demonstration. 

“We affirm the right of every member of Northeastern University’s community to be free of harassment and abuse and disavow all acts of hatred, including Islamophobia, Antisemitism, and racism,” the letter continued. “And we are proud to stand by our students, the next generation of leaders, as they engage in courageous acts of peaceful protest and activism.”

Jewish student defends pro-Palestinian students’ place on campus — 4:00 p.m.

A third-year Jewish student standing off to the side of the encampment, who asked to remain anonymous due to fear of retaliation, said in an interview with The News they believe demonstrations like Thursday’s have been “completely acceptable for a college campus.” 

The third-year student said they “wholeheartedly disagree with the fundamental concept of what they’re saying,” however, these demonstrations still have a place on a college campus, they said.

“It’s a place of free speech, of protected speech. I think where I draw the line is when it comes to advocating for violence or threats against the Jewish community.” 

The third-year student said protesters’ chants of “globalize the Intifada” and “long live the Intifada” can create a feeling of lack of safety for Jewish students on college campuses. 

“I know there are Jews who are protesting here, and people will point to that. People will point to that as, ‘Okay, well, there are Jews who are on our side.’ It’s a very small percentage,” the third-year student said. 

“I stand with them and I empathize with them. But some of these things you just can’t say and then claim it’s in the name of peace and love and call for a ceasefire at the same time as calling for the things they’re calling for.”

Marchers join protest – 3:25 p.m.

A march participant holds a sign saying, “Free the Children Crying for Their Mothers, Free the Mothers Searching for Their Children.” The march circled Centennial twice around 3:25 p.m. (Jessica Xing)

At about 3:25 p.m. a march circled Centennial twice. Over two dozen protesters joined the march, some who were previously watching from the sidelines. 

Leaders of the march played makeshift drums and chanted pro-Palestinian chants through a megaphone. Participants followed with Palestinian flags and a large banner reading “Free the Children Crying for Their Mothers, Free the Mothers Searching for Their Children.”

The march circled through the sidewalk around the Common as protesters on the Common stood, clapped and continued chanting. 

“In the thousands, in the millions, we are all Palestinians,” protesters playing makeshift drums sang. They were using drumsticks on upturned buckets that had signs reading “Free Palestine” taped to the side.

Medics instruct protesters to take contact lenses out — 3:00 p.m.

A medic instructs demonstrators to take their contact lenses out. The announcement was made around 3 p.m. (Jessica Xing)

At about 3 p.m., a person who identified themselves as a medic came over a loudspeaker to tell demonstrators to take their contact lenses out. 

“We love you and we care about you and we don’t want you to get hurt,” the medic said. It was unclear whether the medic was with HFP. 

The medic did not say why they were recommending students take contact lenses out. Wearing contacts when tear gas is deployed can increase painful symptoms and trap the irritating substance in eyes.

Boston police back off of protests, NUPD remain on Centennial — 2:50 p.m.

At about 2:50 p.m., Boston police who were on Centennial walked off en masse, eliciting cheers from students. Dozens of police cars were still parked on Forsyth. 

NUPD remained on the Common. 

Boston police in riot gear close into protest, walk on Centennial Common — 2:38 p.m.

At about 2:38 p.m., at least 25 Boston Police Department, or BPD, officers moved in on the protest. They circled protesters, who were sitting down and linking arms. 

An officer warned students that they would be moved off the Common if they did not have Northeastern IDs. 

Students yelled “Shame” in response. 

A line of BPD officers in riot gear stood in a line in front of protesters on the Common.

Boston Police Officers in riot gear enclose on protest — 2:15 p.m.

At 2:21 p.m., on Forsyth Street, in front of Ruggles, there were at least 18 officers in riot gear equipped with helmets and zip ties. There were at least 30 police cars parked, six of which were police trucks.

Dozens of spectators stood to watch the protest, and demonstrators chanted “Join the circle.” Some did.

Individual arrested while in Ryder Hall — 1:50 p.m.

The Northeastern University Police Department arrested an individual in Ryder Hall around 12:50 p.m., Renata Nyul, Northeastern’s vice president for communications, told to The News. 

The News could not confirm the arrested individual’s relationship with the university, but Nyul said the person was “an unaffiliated individual with an active trespass who was spotted and apprehended.

A Huskies for a Free Palestine, or HFP spokesperson, who was granted anonymity due to fear of retaliation, told The News the arrested individual was a student demonstrator.

Student protesters planning to stay until they are ‘kicked out’ — 1:45 p.m. 

A protester holds a sign reading “Huskies 4 Palestine.” Many protesters brought signage to show their support. (Elizabeth Scholl)

A student protester, August, who asked for his last name to be anonymous due to fear of retaliation, said students are planning to remain on Centennial until they get “kicked out.”

“I’m here because it has been six months of nonstop bombs and slaughter and starvation in Gaza and Palestine,” August said, referring to the Israeli military’s ongoing attacks in retaliation to Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, which have reportedly killed more than 30,000 people. 

August said Northeastern’s encampment is inspired by the multitude of similar protests taking place on college campuses nationwide. 

“It’s very inspiring to see people taking over spaces like this, and I’m here to help how I can to also take over that space,” August said.

Students were threatened with removal from the property if they didn’t show Northeastern identification at about 1:10 p.m.

“It seems like Northeastern is really feeling aggressive,” August said. “But it’s definitely a very scary moment for us. Especially because this is like 100% political persecution.”

Dean of Students tells protesters they must produce ID or ‘will be asked to leave’ — 1:10 p.m.

Dean of Students Chong Kim-Wong announced to the ring of protesters at 1:10 p.m. that they must produce identification proving they are a Northeastern student within 10 minutes or they will be asked to leave campus. 

As Wong used a megaphone and walked around the Common surrounded by Northeastern police to make the announcement, students chanted “We’re just students” and “Shame.”

Other university administrators observing the encampment included Vice President of External Affairs Mike Armini, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs David Madigan and Senior Vice Chancellor for Student Life Madeleine Estabrook.

Protesters also set up a resource table and distributed food at the center of the encampment. Soon after, protesters started playing drums along with chants. 

Police exit inner circle, demonstrators begin setting up additional tents — 12:17 p.m.

The inner circle of protesters that once surrounded two tents merged with the outer circle of demonstrators, creating additional space for tents. They began pitching four additional tents as the circle expanded. The number of protesters grew to over 100 at about 12:30 p.m.

Police, who had initially stood in between the two circles, exited the ring and stood face-to-face with protesters. 

At 12:17 p.m., a protester touched a police officer. The police officer yelled “Don’t touch me” and another officer escorted him out of the circle. At this point, the circle had expanded to span the perimeter of the Centennial.

Organizers, walking around the perimeter of the ring of demonstrators, instructed linked individuals to write the phone number of the National Lawyers Guild on their arms. 

Chants continued, including “Aoun, Aoun, you can’t hide, we charge you with genocide.”

WCVB Channel 5 helicopter hovers over Centennial — 11:45 a.m.

A WCVB helicopter hovers over the encampment. The helicopter hovered for more than 30 minutes above Centennial Common around 11:45 a.m.
(Eli Curwin)

For more than 30 minutes, a bright red Channel 5 helicopter hovered over Centennial Common. The news outlet used aerial footage in their coverage of Northeastern’s encampment. 

Several non-Northeastern-affiliated media outlets have attempted to enter campus property, but have been turned away by campus police. 

A videographer and reporter from Channel 5 along with a photographer from the Boston Herald walked onto Centennial around 12:10 p.m.

Student says police presence at Northeastern follows nationwide trend — 11:30 a.m.

Two NUPD officers watch protesters at Centennial Common. A student said that Northeastern’s police presence at the protest is part of a nationwide trend. (Margot Murphy)

A student standing outside the ring of people on Centennial Common who asked to remain anonymous due to fear of retaliation commented on the police presence at the protest.

“Right now you’re seeing a way-increasing repression across the country as students are just trying to … demand that their schools divest and stop supporting a genocide that’s playing out right now,” the student said. “And immediately as students are doing that, you see the campuses calling police on them.”

The student referenced the hundreds of students arrested at Columbia University, which sparked the national spate of encampments, and University of Texas at Austin, where students were arrested en masse at the direction of the university’s president and Texas Governor Greg Abbott. 

“That’s just really showing the fact that you have students making basic demands about what’s happening in the world, and in response to that — in response to even just a little bit of political agitation on campuses — immediately campus police officers, city police officers, even the National Guard [are] being sent on these campuses.”

The student said the presence of non-Northeastern students was important to show solidarity with Northeastern protesters.

“I think it’s important for there to be cross-campus solidarity,” they said. “I think that’s a very important thing, especially in a city like Boston where you have like 40 to 50 different schools.”

Protesters attempting to join encampment told they must show ID, refuse and join anyway — 11:25 a.m.

NUPD Lieutenant Ryan Janusz informs a group of people that they must show their Husky Cards in order to join the protest. Students and non-affiliated protesters took videos of him relaying the instructions. (Margot Murphy)

A group of protesters attempted to join the encampment, but were told they would violate the university’s trespassing policies by NUPD officer Ryan Janusz.

“You have to show your ID to show you’re an affiliate of the school, or else you need to leave the private property or you are subject to arrest,” he said.

The protesters did not show ID, and eventually joined the encampment. They were met with cheers by the linked demonstrators. 

Non-affiliated protesters attempt to walk on campus property, but are told to leave — 11:19 a.m.

A group of non-Northeastern-affiliated protesters, who for the duration of the protest had remained off campus property on Leon Street, walked several feet onto campus property. They had previously been encouraging participants and cheering when additional protesters joined the encampment.

They were approached by several Northeastern police officers, Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students Chong Kim-Wong, Assistant Vice Chancellor Student Life Operations Maura Mahoney and other university administrators and told they must leave campus property.

The protesters retreated off campus property.

Faculty for Justice in Palestine member defends students — 10:56 a.m.

Marty Blatt speaks with a student about the ongoing encampment. He held a sign that reads, “Gaza Will Never Die.” (Ananya Kulkarni)

Marty Blatt, a professor of history and member of Northeastern Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine, spoke with The News Thursday morning about why he chose to attend the demonstration in support of pro-Palestine students. 

“We’re here to support peaceful, non-violent assembly of students who are … doing no harm to anybody,” he said. “They’re making a political statement and the statement is very important.”

Blatt described NUPD’s presence at the demonstration as a “form of fascism,” saying that its presence and attempts to silence students participating in the demonstration has made him feel less safe. 

“[NUPD is] attempting to silence a peaceful non-violent protest against genocide and against Northeastern’s complicity with that genocide,” he said. “Northeastern could divest from any stock holdings in weapons companies that are producing weapons that are being used to murder Palestinians.”

Blatt emphasized the importance of showing up to support students despite NUPD’s presence.

“They’re attempting to silence, but as you can hear, they haven’t silenced people yet.”

University says protesters are in violation of Code of Conduct — 9:50 a.m.

Pro-Palestine student protesters encircle a tent and link arms while chanting around 9:45 a.m. Students took turns taking breaks in the tent and sharing snacks before returning to chanting. (Margot Murphy)

In a statement to The News, Vice President for Communications Renata Nyul said the protesters’ use of Centennial Commons violated Northeastern’s Code of Student Conduct.

“The quads on the Boston campus are reserved for university events,” Nyul said. “Students currently demonstrating on Centennial Quad are in violation of the Code of Conduct. Those who are not affiliated with Northeastern are trespassing. The university will take action accordingly.”

Demonstrators begin erecting tents — 9:15 a.m.

NUPD surround pro-Palestine student demonstrators while they pass water bottles among each other. More students with posters and tents arrived around 9 a.m. (Margot Murphy)

By 9:15 a.m., additional students arrived with several posters and set up at least two tents. Several more tent bags could be seen in the area, and students stood in a circle with linked arms and continued chanting.


Huskies for a Free Palestine calls for students to join them, instructs protesters not to show Northeastern ID — 9:00 a.m.

Three students link arms and chant pro-Palestine slogans. The demonstration began at 8 a.m. and gained more participants as the day progressed. (Jessica Xing)

Immediately following the start of the protest, Huskies for a Free Palestine, or HFP, posted on their Instagram account, instructing protesters not to produce identification and calling for additional students to join protesters on Centennial. The post also stated that NUPD officers threatened students, confiscated their belongings and kicked protesters.

“Northeastern cops immediately threaten and intimidate Northeastern students taking our OWN CAMPUS BACK IN RESISTANCE TO GENOCIDE,” the post’s caption reads. “They attempted to remove us from our own campus but we are holding strong.”

Protesters gather on Centennial Common — 8:00 a.m.

Around 30 student protesters have gathered on Centennial. Though students did not have tents or posters at the start of the demonstration, they huddled on tarps and chanted pro-Palestine slogans. 

“Justice is our demand. No peace on stolen land,” protesters chanted, along with calls of “Viva, viva Palestina.”

Over a dozen Northeastern University Police Department, or NUPD, officers were on the scene, with many arriving at Centennial prior to the start of the demonstration. Officers asked several students for Husky ID cards and used the Common’s Adirondack chairs to erect a makeshift barricade between protesters, who were seated, and passersby on the sidewalk. 


Reporting and photography by: Eli Curwin, Emily Spatz, Sonel Cutler, Zoe MacDiarmid, Val O’Neill, Annika Sunkara, Jessica Xing, Ethan Wayne, Marta Hill, Ananya Kulkarni, Kristina DaPonte, Alexa Coultoff, Alexis Algazy, Margot Murphy, Darin Zullo, Elizabeth Scholl, Erin Fine, Kevin Gallagher, Lauren Salemo, Brian Daniels, Rachel Umansky-Castro and Curtis DeSmith.

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About the Contributors
Jessica Xing
Jessica Xing, Photo Editor
Jessica Xing is a third-year graphic design major with a minor in journalism. She has previously served as deputy photo editor and design editor and is excited to continue working with photographers for The News this semester.
Margot Murphy, Deputy Photo Editor
Annika Sunkara
Annika Sunkara, Social Media Editor
Annika Sunkara is a second-year journalism major and audiovisual editor of The News. She aspires to continue producing accessible and engaging multimedia content. You can follow her @annika_sunkara on X/Twitter.
Ananya Kulkarni
Ananya Kulkarni, Managing Editor
Ananya Kulkarni is a third-year political science and journalism major and is also pursuing a minor in graphic design. She is a managing editor of The News and has previously served as beat writer for the men’s and women’s rowing teams. Follow her on Instagram (@ananya_kulkarni_media) for updates!
Elizabeth Scholl
Elizabeth Scholl, Deputy Photo Editor
Elizabeth Scholl is a second-year pharmaceutical sciences major with a minor in business administration. She currently serves as one of the deputy photo editors for The News. Her favorite events to photograph include sports, concerts and anything The News needs last minute.
Eli Curwin
Eli Curwin, Senior Reporter
Eli Curwin is a third-year journalism and political science combined major and a senior reporter for The News covering campus life and university administration. He has previously served as editor-in-chief and projects editor and is excited to continue bringing thoughtful and insightful reporting to The News. Follow him on X @elicurwin for updates.
Rachel Umansky-Castro
Rachel Umansky-Castro, Opinion Editor
Rachel Umansky-Castro is a third-year criminal justice and journalism combined major with a minor in international affairs. She is the opinion editor of The News and previously served as the projects editor. Rachel is currently on co-op in New York as an investigator for Brooklyn Defender Services. She is excited to stay connected to campus by helping students write powerful arguments!
Darin Zullo
Darin Zullo, Deputy Lifestyle Editor
Darin Zullo is a second-year journalism and English combined major with a minor in photojournalism. This is his second semester as a deputy photo editor for The News. He has also written for the Global Observer and the Scope and is looking forward to continue working with The News this semester.
Emily Spatz
Emily Spatz, Campus Editor
Emily Spatz is a journalism and political science combined major with a minor in english and campus editor of The News. She is currently a general assignment reporter co-op at and has interned at her hometown newspaper covering business, city events and politics. She hopes to continue bringing pertinent, timely and thorough reporting to the Northeastern community. You can follow her @emilymspatz on X.
Marta Hill
Marta Hill, Editor-at-Large
Marta Hill (she/her) is a fourth-year journalism major and the editor-at-large of The News. Before becoming editor-in-large, she served as editor-in-chief for a year and previously held the positions of campus editor, deputy campus editor and a variety of staff roles. Marta currently works for NASA as a science writer and hopes to keep the entire campus community up to date on matters concerning Northeastern. You can follow her @martajhill on Twitter.