Student Protestors Allegedly Hit With Chemical Weapons During Protest, Multiple Reportedly Sent To Hospital: Statement

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Ilan Hulkower Contributor
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Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at Columbia University alleged in a statement Monday that “at least ten students were hospitalized” after allegedly being hit with chemical weapons following a Friday protest.

SJP’s statement on Instagram claimed the alleged chemical attack on the “peaceful” pro-Palestine campus protest was done by “two former Israeli military soldiers.”  The statement further alleged Columbia has “yet to explicitly condemn a targeted hate crime against Palestinian and pro-Palestinian students” and has not “provided adequate support or guidance.” (RELATED: ‘Immediate F*cking Ceasefire’: Pro-Palestine Harvard Students End Occupation Of University Hall After 24-Hours)

Dennis A. Mitchell, the Interim Provost at Columbia University, issued a statement Monday saying several “Columbia and Barnard students” alleged that they were “sprayed with a foul-smelling substance that required students to seek medical treatment.” The New York City Police Department has opened an investigation into the alleged incident, the statement read in part. Columbia said while the investigation proceeds, “the alleged perpetrators” have been “banned from campus.” Columbia added that the police were also looking into whether the alleged incident could be qualified as a hate crime.

New York police told the Guardian that six students have filed police reports and no arrests have been made so far. A police spokesperson reportedly claimed one individual alleged she “smelled an unknown odor and began to feel nauseated and experienced a burning sensation in her eyes.”

Three students said they thought the substance allegedly sprayed on protesters was “Skunk,” a chemical developed by an Israeli firm employed for crowd-control, Columbia Spectator reported.

SJP was suspended by Columbia University back in Nov. for holding unauthorized events that allegedly “included threatening rhetoric and intimidation” in breach of university policy, ABC News reported. The university maintained that the suspension of SJP activity would be lifted for the spring semester provided the group demonstrated “a commitment to compliance with university policies,” Jewish Insider reported.