Students pitch tents outside Queen Mary University after accusing them of ‘funding genocide’

Students at Queen Mary University (QMUL) in East London are staging a pro-Palestine sit-in. Protesters set up tents at the university, and chants of “Queen Mary, shame, shame” can be heard echoing.

There are also students holding placards reading “the hands of Rafah”, a reference to Gaza’s southernmost point, which shares the border with Egypt. According to The Guardian, between 360,000 and 500,000 Palestinians have fled Rafah in the past week following Israeli warnings to evacuate the eastern and central neighborhoods ahead of further attacks.

Conditions there are increasingly desperate, with people sheltering in makeshift camps and overcrowded apartment blocks. Many say they have been displaced multiple times amid intense Israeli airstrikes and ground operations, as well as the ongoing blockade.

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The sign reads “QMUL Fund Genocide”(Image: PSC)

The May 13 sit-in is another show of solidarity with victims of the ongoing crisis – a place Human Rights Watch calls an “open-air prison.” In January, the charity Oxfam reported that Israel was killing around 250 Palestinians every day.

According to the charity, this is a higher daily death rate than any other conflict in the 21st century. About 13,000 children have died at Israel’s hands since October 7 last year, Reuters reported in March. They added that Israel denies the accusations of genocide, saying it was acting in self-defense after the October 7 attack on Israwl by Hamas.

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