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Palestine protests at University of Melbourne escalate with establishment of ‘Mahmoud’s Hall’

Protesters at the University of Melbourne (photo: Tye Wilson)

Students and staff at the University of Melbourne took hold of the Arts West building yesterday afternoon, renaming it ‘Mahmoud’s Hall’. 

No other university encampment in Australia has occupied a building inside a university. 

They demand that the University of Melbourne fully divest from and disclose all relations with weapons manufacturers.

Encampment within newly named Mahmoud’s Hall (photo: Tye Wilson)

University of Melbourne’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor Pip Nicholson arrived on the scene at 1:30pm yesterday in an attempt to break up the protest. 

“I am asking you in peace, to respect your peers across the university, some of whom are deeply traumatised by the ongoing escalation” she said. 

The University of Melbourne issued a statement emphasising students should vacate the building by 2:30pm or the “university will make decisions that will regrettably and unavoidably escalate the tension”. 

Police talking with students at University of Melbourne encampment (photo: Tye Wilson

Police presence was limited to six officers who were present on campus from 4pm and left within two hours. 

Students continued to hold the building overnight, but it’s expected the university will attempt to clear the building by Friday afternoon. 

In solidarity with those within Mahmoud’s Hall UniMelb for Palestine has held a snap rally in front of the building from 5pm today.


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