Biden likely to face pro-Palestinian protests at iconic Morehouse College | Israel’s war against Gaza News

Martin Luther King Jr.’s largely black institution has been the site of protests calling for an end to the killings in Gaza.

Joe Biden is likely to be greeted by protesters calling for a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip during his speech at the former Martin Luther King Jr University, in the US president’s latest attempt to woo black voters.

Biden’s commencement speech on Sunday at Morehouse College in Atlanta, in the electoral battleground state of Georgia, aims to encourage black and young voters to help him win later this year against former President Donald Trump.

Those were two groups that helped him win the presidency in 2020, but are increasingly dissatisfied with him over his handling of the war in Gaza, which has so far killed more than 35,000 Palestinians, mostly women and children.

The protests at Morehouse, a historically black college, come after students called on the school to cancel Biden’s speech about his support for Israel despite the catastrophic humanitarian situation in Gaza.

The White House last week sent a senior official to meet with students and faculty at Morehouse to discuss objections to Biden’s speech, according to US broadcaster NBC News.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Friday that Biden sought to use the speech as “an opportunity to elevate and deliver an important message to our future leaders.”

Bernice King, the civic icon’s daughter, told Bloomberg in an interview last week that Black voters are “very unhappy right now with the president” and that Biden risks losing a sizable portion of their votes.

The civil rights group Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) had said Biden should not speak at Morehouse.

“His team should have made the decision that this is not the right time to bring the attention of Morehouse students to the president and his bad policy in Gaza,” said CAIR’s Edward Ahmed Mitchell.

The controversy over Morehouse’s speech comes after weeks of major protests at American universities, including Atlanta, calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and divestment from Israel.

Biden said “order must prevail” on campuses, and police have made thousands of arrests across the United States while attacking student camps.

Protesters were arrested during a violent police crackdown in Brooklyn, New York, on Saturday, while hundreds of protesters gathered in Washington, DC to demand an end to bloodshed in Gaza and the US supply of weapons to Israel.

The protests, which have spread around the world, continue amid the Israeli ground invasion of Rafah in southern Gaza, along with a deadly raid on Jabalia in the north.

Meanwhile, Israel is allowing very little aid into the enclave and the United States is carrying out a much-criticized plan to deliver humanitarian aid through a temporary floating dock.

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