UCLA protests: Dispersal order issued at campus camp-in

Pro-Palestinian protesters at the UCLA camp-in Wednesday seemed to be prepared for some sort of conflict. Protesters could be seen bringing in helmets and umbrellas Wednesday afternoon, while man-made "mobile barricades" were visible along the edges of the group’s encampment.

Demonstrators wouldn’t speak with FOX 11 Wednesday, but held a public press conference. During the press conference, a pro-Palestine organizer suggested police should have intervened earlier during Tuesday night’s violent clash with counter-protesters. However, the group is also demanding UCLA "abolish policing" and "sever ties with the LAPD."

"Law enforcement simply stood at the edge of the lawn and refused to help [or] budge, as we screamed for their help," said an organizer Wednesday. "Campus safety left within minutes. External security the university hired for backup watched, filmed, and laughed on the side as the immediate danger inflicted upon us escalated."

Around 6 p.m., UCLA police warned demonstrators on campus that the encampment is "unlawful," ordering everyone must leave the area. The university also issued the same warning Tuesday, threatening to expel or suspend students.

SUGGESTED: UCLA pro-Palestine protesters say encampment will stay up until demands are met

During the press conference the demonstrators were asked if they had sent any evidence, like videos, to the police, to try and identify alleged attackers. The demonstrators said that they did, but "we also do not trust that the necessary action will be taken... [Police] stood in a line, and they watched... they didn't do anything, they didn't come in between us. And I will be clear that when I'm saying this, we don't want police on our campus. We don't want police to be the ones defending us. We assert that our people are the ones keeping us safe."

Fireworks and bear spray were used between the two sides Tuesday night. Some people were beaten — with no law enforcement around. Hours later, pro-Israeli protesters could be heard cheering as authorities walked in to break up the fight.

"I’ve come here every day you’ve been here," said Sasha Rahban, an Israel supporter. "We’ve known this was going to escalate to what last night was. I don’t know how [university leaders] could go to bed last night not thinking, we have to stop this before someone potentially gets killed".

"It is completely right for people to stand up, put their bodies on the line, put their futures on the line, to stop a crime against humanity," said Sunsara Taylor, a Palestine supporter.

UC President Michael V. Drake also issued a statement on Tuesday's violence.

"This morning, the University of California community woke up to shocking scenes from UCLA of a protest that turned violent overnight," said UC President Michael V. Drake, M.D. "Through the early morning hours, mutual aid was summoned from the LAPD and others to help UCLA restore control. Unfortunately, there were a reported 15 injuries, including one hospitalization. The situation has been stabilized and UCLA Chancellor Gene Block has reiterated that, having declared the encampment unlawful yesterday, he will dismantle it at the appropriate time.  My office has requested a detailed accounting from the campus about what transpired in the early morning hours today. But some confusion remains. Therefore, we are also ordering an independent external review of both UCLA’s planning and actions, and the effectiveness of the mutual aid response. Such a review will help us address many immediate questions but also help guide us in possible future events."