Amid a dizzying array of standoffs involving pro-Palestinian demonstrations and encampments at schools, colleges that cracked down on protesters over the weekend have given various justifications for his or her actions, whereas others despatched blended indicators with their inaction.

Behind all of it was a central query confronting college leaders throughout the nation: When does an indication cross the road?

Faculties have cited property injury, outdoors provocateurs, antisemitic expressions or simply failures to heed warnings as causes to clear encampments and arrest students. Scholar teams have strongly denied or questioned lots of these claims.

Northeastern College in Boston, Washington College in St. Louis, Indiana College Bloomington and Arizona State College had police forces transfer in on demonstrations on Saturday, resulting in greater than 200 arrests. At different colleges — together with Columbia, Penn, Harvard and Cornell — an icy pressure lingered on Sunday as leaders warned about potential penalties for demonstrators however had but to hold them out.

Counter protests additionally arose on Sunday, together with on the Massachusetts Institute of Expertise, the College of Pennsylvania and on the College of California, Los Angeles, the place altercations broke out amongst demonstrators.

Washington College was calm on Sunday, a day after campus cops made 100 arrests. Directors mentioned {that a} group had violated college coverage by starting to arrange a camp on the east finish of campus. Cops arrested individuals who refused to depart “after being requested a number of instances,” the directors wrote.

“Nobody has the correct to disrupt the flexibility of individuals in our group to be taught and work,” they mentioned.

Greater than 800 individuals have been arrested since April 18, when the New York Police cleared an encampment at Columbia.

At Northeastern, the place 102 protesters had been arrested earlier on Saturday, a college spokesman mentioned the demonstration had been “infiltrated by skilled organizers” and somebody had used “virulent antisemitic slurs.” Protesters denied each claims.

Many faculty leaders have insisted that individuals outdoors their schools are stoking the confrontations, regardless of restricted proof backing their claims. In lots of instances, the teams of protesters have largely concerned college students and college workers, however a notable exception was at Washington College on Saturday. Of the 100 arrests made, solely 23 had been college students and 4 had been workers, the college mentioned in a statement on Sunday.

Officers at Arizona State mentioned that 15 college students had been among the many 72 protesters arrested on Friday, although it was unclear what number of had been workers or school.

However at different schools, the affect of outsiders was not clear.

About 200 individuals attended a pro-Israel demonstration on Sunday at Penn, a couple of hundred yards from a pro-Palestinian encampment. Noah Rubin, a junior who spoke on the pro-Israel rally, mentioned that not all the pro-Palestinian protesters are Penn college students.

“We’ve got a few individuals documented who’ve a historical past of violence in Philadelphia,” he mentioned, although he didn’t present extra particulars. A spokeswoman for the encampment didn’t reply to a request for touch upon Mr. Rubin’s allegation.

Some colleges have tried to curb the affect of outsiders. As an example, Harvard has sought to limit entry solely to those that confirmed a college ID. At Northeastern, officers had requested protesters for his or her scholar IDs earlier within the week earlier than the arrests on campus on Saturday. Some protesters confirmed them, whereas others declined. At Columbia, which closed its gates, protesters on the opposite aspect added to a way of chaos, with many shouting antisemitic chants and threatening college students.

Protesters erected an encampment on the College of Mary Washington in Fredricksburg, Va., on Friday, however after the demonstration was opened to the general public, college officers, citing security considerations, requested organizers to take down their tents, which they did early that night time. A peaceable protest continued into Saturday, when “outdoors affect” pushed for the encampment to develop once more, Troy D. Paino, the college’s president, said in a statement on Sunday.

When tents had been put again up Saturday afternoon, the college mentioned, the organizers had been informed to depart. Twelve protesters who stayed, 9 of whom had been college students, had been then arrested.

However whereas directors at some colleges have tried to level the finger at protesters from outdoors the group, their very own college students have typically been those who had been arrested. At Emory College in Atlanta, 20 of at the least 28 individuals arrested on Thursday had ties to the college, regardless of officers’ early insistence that nobody concerned within the encampment was affiliated with the college.

Emory’s president, Gregory L. Fenves, said in a statement on Sunday {that a} peaceable protest on Saturday had been disrupted by some individuals spray-painting “hateful messages” in a constructing’s exterior partitions and vandalizing different buildings.

“Emory is navigating a divide between people who want to categorical themselves peacefully and people who search to make use of our campus as a platform to advertise discord,” Dr. Fenves mentioned, including that such incidents “should be rejected and condemned.”

The high-profile conflicts have fueled extra demonstrations, together with in campuses the place protests had been dismantled earlier within the 12 months.

At Stanford, the place an earlier encampment was taken down in February, protesters erected a second encampment on Thursday. Directors said in a statement on Friday that it had delivered letters to about 60 college students warning them that “failure to stop conduct in violation of college coverage” may lead to disciplinary motion and even arrest.

However on at the least one campus with a close-by encampment, on the College of Pittsburgh, commencement was held with out challenge on Sunday as deliberate.

Afterward, protesters marched close to campus. After they tried to get onto the garden of the college’s Cathedral of Studying constructing, they had been stopped by a line of cops.

Anna Betts, Patrick Cooley, Colbi Edmonds, Jenna Fisher, Jon Hurdle and Bernard Mokam contributed reporting.

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