US Teen Arrested During Violent UCLA Protest Over Gaza

A youngster who is suspected of hitting pro-Palestinian demonstrators at a University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) encampment has been taken into custody by the police.

Following the attack three weeks prior, there were fights that lasted for over two hours before the authorities cleared the area.

Edan On, 18, appears to be the first counterprotester to be arrested in connection with the overnight mayhem on campus.

According to extensively circulated photos and videos of the altercation, Mr. On is the individual who can be seen striking demonstrators with a wooden rod while donning a white sweatshirt and mask.

Although the man’s name has not been released by the police, arrest logs indicate that Mr. On was detained by UCLA police on Thursday morning.

He was taken into custody at a Beverly Hills business and is currently being held at a Los Angeles County jail. In accordance with the LA County Sheriff’s Department, he is charged with one felony count of assault with a deadly weapon.

CNN reported earlier this month that Mr. On’s mother first claimed her son was the person shown in videos wearing a white mask at the protest encampment, but she subsequently said he denied being there.

According to her, Mr. On is in his last year of high school and intends to enlist in the Israeli army. On Friday, his family declined to react to US media. The US media said that his bond was set at $30,000 (£24,000).

Detectives from the campus police force helped make “their first arrest in the ongoing investigation into the April 30 assaults that occurred on our campus,” according to a letter from the UCLA Office of Campus Safety on Friday.

The university “is committed to investigating all reported acts of violence and is actively working to identify the other perpetrators of violence associated with protest activities” , said the statement.

It further stated that “those who inflicted violence on our community will be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law”.

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The hours-long fighting on April 30 drew harsh condemnation for the campus police department. Afterwards, more over 200 pro-Palestinian demonstrators who remained inside the camp were taken into custody.

The institution fired its campus police chief earlier this week after he was criticized for failing to put an end to the violence.

Opposition to the conflict in Gaza has given rise to protest movements at US universities. But Americans were stunned by the carnage at UCLA.

It happened just a few hours after students had taken over a Columbia University building, which was searched and removed by New York City police.

UCLA Chancellor Gene Block appeared before Congress on Thursday regarding the university’s handling of the protests in Washington, DC.

The university reported on Friday that while he was speaking, demonstrators on campus established a second camp, blocked access to facilities, and committed acts of damage.

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