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Students stage Birmingham university sit-in protest

17 January 11 22:01
The University of Birmingham

Students have protested at the University of Birmingham against threatened redundancies and "unnecessary" departmental budget cuts.

The university said it would axe 200 out of 6,000 posts by 2014 to ensure long-term growth and said most cuts would come from voluntary redundancies.

Up to 20 people occupied a study area on the Edgbaston campus on Monday but the protest ended by 1845 GMT.

The university said the protesters were not elected student representatives.

Protesters said cuts were unnecessary due to the university's £20m surplus.

One of the protesters, Faris Karouni, said: "We think the University of Birmingham is in such a good financial position with a £20m surplus it doesn't need to make these cuts, unlike other universities that are much less well-off."

He said their plan was to hold an open protest on the campus to broadcast their views but not disrupt lectures. He said their aim was to get the university to enter talks with the students about the level of planned redundancies.

A spokesman for the university said: "Students and staff have a right to protest peacefully, however those protesting today are not elected representatives of the student body and we are concerned that continued action of this nature may have a negative impact on the quality of the learning experience for the rest of the student community."

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