TU Delft is paying for damage pro-Palestinian protests

(Photo: Kim Bakker)

Although the tented camp is gone, pro-Palestinian sentiment has not disappeared from the TU Delft campus. On Monday morning, slogans like ‘TU Delft complicit’ and ‘Don’t like graffiti? Look away like you do for genocide…’ were written on the walls of the Faculty of Engineering, Governance and Management and Education and Students Affairs amongst others. That last building also houses an international elementary school and childcare. The graffiti was removed on Tuesday.

Like the cost of previous damage caused by pro-Palestinian demonstrations, the university is absorbing those cleanup costs. In a consultation with the student council last week, vice rector magnificus Rob Mudde said that the costs ‘amount to a quarter of a million’. That could be more, the TU Delft spokesman said when asked. How exactly that amount was arrived at, the spokesman cannot say.

However, he does know what the money was or is being spent on. For example, he mentions a destroyed flagpole, walls that need to be repainted and doors that were so damaged that they had to be replaced. TU Delft also hired a special company to clean the auditorium, a national monument.

The damage was caused by the pro-Palestine demonstrations that recently took place on campus. In early May were the first protests at the Freezone near the EEMCS Faculty, and on 23 May the activists set up their tents in front of the university library. These remained in place for more than three weeks. Meanwhile, only an olive tree remains.

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