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Pro-Palestinian protesters say they'll take down UGuelph encampment by next Monday

University of Guelph signage is shown in Guelph, Ont., is shown on Friday, March 24, 2017. Pro-Palestinian protesters who set up camp at the University of Guelph more than a month ago say they will pack up and leave by next Monday.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Hannah Yoon

GUELPH, Ont. — Pro-Palestinian protesters who set up camp at the University of Guelph more than a month ago say they will pack up and leave by next Monday.

The demonstrators say in a written statement that they will be leaving on their own timeline, which will give them the chance to do so safely and without damaging the camp materials.

They say equipment used at the encampment will be donated to those struggling as a result of the housing crisis.

The announcement comes after the university delivered a trespass notice this Monday and warned that it would take legal action if the protesters stayed put.

The school said it took those steps after the group ignored its request to dismantle the camp by Sunday evening.

The university's president, Charlotte Yates, says its plans to pursue litigation and an injunction will be on hold as long as the encampment is gone by 9 a.m. next Monday.

"We are extending this deadline as a gesture of good faith that the encampment will disband, not return, and all activities this week and beyond will be lawful and in accordance with university policies," Yates said in a written statement.

"If these conditions are not met or disruptions to university operations continue, the university will proceed with legal action."

Protesters took down their encampment at the University of Waterloo and Western University over the weekend, roughly two months after they were established.

The University of Waterloo had filed a lawsuit against the protesters, and sought a court order to take down the camp and allow police to arrest and remove those who refused to leave. The school said it was withdrawing the lawsuit and injunction proceedings now that the encampment is gone.

Both protest groups said they would continue to push for divestment in other ways.

Pro-Palestinian protesters at the University of Toronto also cleared a two-month old encampment last week after a judge granted the school an injunction.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 9, 2024.

The Canadian Press

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