Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Daily Lobo The Independent Voice of UNM since 1895
Latest Issue
Read our print edition on Issuu

State representatives call for solidarity with UNM pro-Palestine encampment

The longest standing protest in UNM history, week three

Two New Mexico representatives sent letters to University of New Mexico President Garnett Stokes in solidarity with the pro-Palestine Duck Pond encampment, the longest standing protest in UNM history, on Tuesday, May 7 and Wednesday, May 8. Stokes visited the encampment on Thursday, May 9.

In their letters, Representative Eleanor Chávez and Representative Patricia Roybal Caballero expressed concerns about New Mexico State Police using excessive force on protesters who occupied the Student Union Building April 29-30. They also asked Stokes to meet and work with the students who drafted the Israel divestment resolution.

On Monday, May 6, Roybal Caballero visited the encampment. She gave student protesters her card to give to Stokes in hopes of speaking with her, she said.

“I came to stand in solidarity, in support of the ceasefire and everything that's going on here with the students in the community. And then I wanted to encourage a dialogue,” Roybal Caballero said.

UNM Chief Government Relations Officer Michael Puelle went to the encampment and spoke with Caballero because Stokes was unavailable, Stokes later said.

The same day, protesters entered Scholes Hall — which has been “locked for security reasons” since May 7, according to a sign posted on the door — and sat outside Stokes’ office. They taped printed photos of Palestinians killed in Gaza on the walls and doors.

As of May 9, 34,904 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, according to Aljazeera.

Stokes arrived at Scholes Hall around 4:15 p.m.

“I will say that what you're asking for is far more complex than you recognize. And I am not in any way saying that the tragedy that we are talking about is not horrific, but there are tragedies all over this world,” Stokes said to the protesters.

During a conversation with Stokes, protester Jonathan Juarez said she called NMSP multiple times in relation to the recent pro-Palestine demonstrations on campus.

“I have called the police once, and it was related to the really incredible occupying of the SUB that was clearly in violation — the incredible work that was done inside to vandalize the place,” Stokes said.

On May 9, Stokes visited the encampment at the Duck Pond for the first time.

Enjoy what you're reading?
Get content from The Daily Lobo delivered to your inbox

Students, alumni and community members spoke with Stokes about UNM’s 1985 divestment from apartheid South Africa, and the steps that would be necessary to meet current student demands for divestment from Israel and disclosure of investments.

“It’s interesting. I haven’t actually come into this site, but I have talked to a lot of people, and it’s interesting the varying perspectives about varying history. There are a lot of voices,” Stokes said.

Paloma Chapa is the multimedia editor for the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at or on Twitter @paloma_chapa88

Leila Chapa is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at or on Twitter @lchapa06

Paloma Chapa

Paloma Chapa is the multimedia editor for the Daily Lobo. She can be reached at or on Twitter @paloma_chapa88

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Daily Lobo