WWhile the brutal attack by a pro-Palestinian on a Jewish student in Berlin continues to be discussed, another rally took place on Thursday afternoon in front of the cafeteria of the Free University (FU) in Dahlem.

Heike Schmoll

Political correspondent in Berlin, responsible for “Bildungswelten”.

According to the police, it was directed “against the selective solidarity of the university management and restrictions on democratic rights.” A mid-double-digit number of pro-Palestinian demonstrators gathered under the motto “Solidarity with Palestine”. The demonstration was organized by the “Palestine Committee FU Berlin”.

A spokeswoman for the committee said on site that the state of Israel was “based on apartheid, oppression and injustice”. It did not give a clear answer to questions about whether the group recognized Israel's right to exist. Among the pro-Palestinian demonstrators were several students who were involved in the occupation of a FU lecture hall at the beginning of December.

Pro-Israel counter-demonstrators on Thursday in front of the FU

Pro-Israel counter-demonstrators on Thursday in front of the FU

Image: dpa

She condemned the attack on the Jewish student “just like any other form of discrimination,” said the spokeswoman. The pro-Palestinian demonstrators objected to the FU's allegedly “one-sided” positioning. Some pro-Israel counter-demonstrators opposed them. One of them carried a sign reading “Free Palestine from Hamas.”

Pro-Palestinian participants chanted “Free Palestine,” which the counter-demonstrators added with “from Hamas.” In the meantime there was a war of words between the two camps. The police intervened. The FU had already distanced itself from the event and, according to its own statements, filed a criminal complaint against the call on the Instagram page “Young Struggle”, where it was assured that they were advocating a “complete liberation of Palestine”.

An image of the so-called Palestinian cloth, the Kufiya, which depicts the entire Israeli territory without borders to the West Bank and Gaza, gave an idea of ​​what this liberation might look like. For the FU, the presentation with the call is a denial of Israel's right to exist, said FU President Günter Ziegler. The rally is taking place on the street and is not supported by the FU. “Should an unauthorized event spill over onto the grounds of the Free University, the university will, if necessary, make use of its house rules,” it said.