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Georgia campus protests over Gaza - Live updates

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Anti-war protesters leave USC after police arrive, while Northeastern ceremony proceeds calmly

4:53 PM

Students protesting the war in Gaza abandoned their camp at the University of Southern California early Sunday after being surrounded by police and threatened with arrest, while Northeastern University’s commencement began peacefully at Boston’s Fenway Park.

Developments in both places were being watched closely following scores of arrests last month — 94 people at USC in Los Angeles and about 100 at Northeastern in Boston.

Dozens of Los Angeles Police Department officers arrived about 4 a.m. at USC to assist campus safety officers. The university had warned of arrests on social media and in person. Video showed some protesters packing up and leaving, while officers formed lines to push others away from the camp as it emptied out. The university said there were no reports of any arrests.

USC President Carol Folt said it was time to draw a line because “the occupation was spiraling in a dangerous direction” with areas of campus blocked and people being harassed.

“The operation was peaceful,” Folt wrote in an update. “Campus is opening, students are returning to prepare for finals, and commencement set-up is in full swing.”

USC earlier canceled its main graduation ceremony while allowing other commencement activities to continue.

At the Northeastern commencement Sunday, some students waved Palestinian flags but were outnumbered by those waving the flags of India and the U.S., among others. Graduate students went first, with the larger undergraduate commencement to follow.

The Associated Press has tallied about 2,500 people arrested at about 50 campuses since April 18, based on its reporting and statements from universities and law enforcement.

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