Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Eyewitness report: Inside the UCL anti-Israel demonstration

    Devora Khafi, the campus director of Stand With Us, was recovering today after allegedly being assaulted during the protest at University College London on Thursday night.

    She described the moment she was confronted by up to 50 angry protesters.

    Ms Khafi said: “I was standing outside the main doors of the room where the meeting was planned to take place, with a list of people to tick off as they arrived.

    “All of a sudden, about 40-50 protesters appeared in front of us. They were in the same building as us. They approached and I was pushed against the doors by one of them – a girl.

    “I was held there for about two minutes. Her back was to me and she was pressing me against the door. She didn’t move. Then her friend came and she moved. She took a step forward, but she still stood in front of me the whole time.

    “I was feeling very claustrophobic. I managed to get outside the building where I had a bit of a panic attack. It was the feeling of claustrophobia - that was really terrible.

    “Another of us, Liora Cadranel, who is co-president of UCL Israel Society, was assaulted. I didn’t see it happen because she was inside the room, but she got a pushed by a man. She’s OK, but shaken up.

    “We’re all very shaken up. We go to a lot of Israel events on campus, but we’ve never seen protests on this scale before. We’re all thinking about what it means for Jewish students.

    “We knew a protest was going to happen. A mass text was sent out to a lot of students beforehand. But we had no idea that it would be like this.

    “During the actual event, when Hen Mazzig was speaking, two men managed to open a window and get into the room. They jumped over two girls sitting there, who were very shocked.

    “When we were escorted out of the room in the face of all those protesters shouting at us, that was very intimidating. We felt more police should have been called to escort us out. Cameras were in our faces as well. I felt many there truly enjoyed making us feel scared. And that is what is truly worrying.

    “I go to a lot a Israel events. This one was very different. They weren’t afraid to hurt girls. These people are not afraid to do anything. It was unbelievable. This was the worst experience I’ve ever had at an Israel event on campus.

    "But I am so proud of the Jewish students unifying and carrying on with the event. We didn't cower in the face of intimidation and stood up with our heads held high.”

    Metropolitan Police have confirmed they are investigating an allegation of common assault.

    UCL has launched an inquiry into incidents at the event, which it said was “not violent”.

The Diary

Winston to make Top of the Pops-style show for BBC

JC Reporter

Yesterday, 17:32

Winston to make Top of the Pops-style show for BBC
Education news

Pledge on free schools

JC Reporter

Friday, July 14, 2017

Pledge on free schools
Israel

Israel and Jordan’s ambassadors share a platform at London event

JC Reporter

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Israel and Jordan’s ambassadors share a platform at London event
Maccabiah

Maccabiah cricket silver a "tremendous achievement"

JC Reporter

Yesterday, 16:03

Maccabiah cricket silver a "tremendous achievement"
Education news

Chasidic schools rapped over premises

JC Reporter

Friday, July 14, 2017

Chasidic schools rapped over premises
Community News

Gitta, 82, drops in for Emunah

JC Reporter

Monday, July 10, 2017

Gitta, 82, drops in for Emunah
Letters

The JC Letters Page July 14 2017

JC Reporter

Friday, July 14, 2017

The JC Letters Page July 14 2017
Education news

JFS on winning streak

JC Reporter

Friday, July 14, 2017

JFS on winning streak
Israel

Unesco declares Hebron a Palestinian heritage site

JC Reporter

Friday, July 7, 2017

Unesco declares Hebron a Palestinian heritage site