Physical intervention during new occupation at TU/e

Action groups University Rebellion and End Fossil Occupy have once again occupied TU/e, presenting the Executive Board with new and more extensive demands. They are presently occupying two meeting rooms in Atlas and have hung up a banner in the main hall of Atlas, where they are handing out flyers. Vice-president Nicole Ummelen has already met with the protesters and asked them to continue to engage in a dialogue and to end their occupation of the rooms. If the protesters refuse to leave voluntarily, Ummelen said, she will be forced to notify the police. After that, security officers and board president Robert-Jan Smits physically removed two protesters from the second room, after which the police arrived for the remaining protesters.

The action group, which was present with some twenty people, demands that the university:

  • Cut all ties with fossil industry, which doesn’t just concern research and education, but also means: no more fossil companies at career expos and recruitment events
  • Becomes fully transparent about its ties with commercial companies, and sets down guidelines for collaboration with those companies
  • Becomes fully transparent about employees’ salaries, in particular salaries of employees in high positions
  • Leads in a democratic manner: the university is no company and should therefore not be managed in such a way
  • Ensure that the full board of the university is elected in a democratic way (which currently isn’t the case)

The action groups in Eindhoven intend to continue with the occupation until their demands have been met. The first two protesters were physically removed by security officers and by executive board president Robert-Jan Smits. Cursor’s editor also got caught up in the hustle and bustle as she was reporting on the occupation. The boardroom is currently still being occupied by two protesters. The adjacent room is being occupied by several students. Nicole Ummelen returned after the physical incident and has said that the students broke the rules by also occupying the boardroom (which was being used as the time), apart from the other room. The students want the university to recognize the fact that they were physically removed from the room by the board president and security officers. Shortly afterwards, the board had to leave. Security personnel is currently guarding the boardroom. The police are at the scene.

Earlier this week, protesters occupied university buildings in, among other cities, Utrecht, Rotterdam and Delft.

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