Eleven NYU groups held a protest on the steps of the Kimmel Center for University Life on Monday, demanding that the university remove itself from the involvement they believe it has in Yemen’s ongoing war. The group of approximately 40 protestors chanted, “How do you spell complicit? NYU,” as they called on university leadership to condemn the United Arab Emirates’ role in the war in Yemen.
The protestors say NYU is complicit in the crisis in Yemen because the university has a campus in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE. The UAE is backing Saudi Arabia in the war against Yemen with the intention of putting Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi, Yemen’s president, back in control after he was ousted by a rebel movement of Houthi Shia Muslims.
Protestors believe NYU is benefiting in a region that has displaced millions of people and led to large-scale humanitarian crises. Gallatin senior Grace Easterly feels NYU has fallen silent on the situation in Yemen.
“[Because of] NYU’s affiliation with the UAE, they are complicit with the war crimes happening in Yemen,” Easterly said.
Activist and organizer Dylan A-C, outlined a few key figures of the humanitarian crisis.
“[Fourteen] million people are on the brink of starvation,” A-C said. “That is half the population of Yemen. [Eighty-five thousand] Yemeni children have died from malnutrition and one child is estimated to die every 10 minutes.”
The protestors also called on New York Senator Chuck Schumer to sponsor S.J. Resolution 54, which would remove the United States Armed Forces from Yemen, this week. This would end the U.S. presence in the region, which has persisted since the Obama administration.
Since the Obama administration, the U.S. has provided the Saudi-UAE coalition with weapons and aid in military operations. Covert operations have been authorized by the Trump and Obama administrations, damaging diplomatic resolutions since 2011.
Email Jared Peraglia at [email protected].