Baby Shambles Star Plays to Packed SOAS Occupation
Support for the SOAS occupation is gathering momentum this evening, after they vowed to defy a High Court injunction. Baby Shambles star Drew McConnell arrived along with Kieran Leonard and members of the Hey Tourists to play to the defiant occupiers and show their solidarity with the growing student movement.
Jeremy Corbyn, MP, and Lindsey German of the Coalition of Resistance earlier gave rousing speeches to the students, rallying them to continue their campaign. Students from other occupations also arrived bearing signs saying ‘UCL supports SOAS’ and ‘UEL supports SOAS’.
The students, who have been occupying the Brunei Suite since midday on Monday, were today ordered to leave following an injunction hearing in the High Court. Expressing outrage at what they described as a disproportionate response by the University administration, 150 student occupiers have vowed to use peaceful means to resist eviction.
The students want the University administration to support them in their campaign against government plans to increase tuition fees and cut the teaching budget. After refusing all approaches to negotiate by the occupiers, the administration yesterday issued a request for an injunction. This request was granted this afternoon.
In an energetic meeting of 150 students held immediately after the ruling, the occupiers decided to stand by their commitment to stay until their demands are met. It is expected that high Court bailiffs will arrive at some point during the night. The occupiers intend to peacefully refuse to leave.
Despite the uncertainty of the situation and ongoing frustration at management, spirits remain high and support for the occupation is visibly growing. Sandy Nichols, SOAS Unison Branch Secretary said ‘the overwhelming majority of staff support what the occupiers are doing. Management are trying to deny students their legitimate right to protest over an issue of grave importance. It is an outrage.’