Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"Edinburgh University Students Vote Overwhelmingly for Boycott of Israeli Goods"

"Edinburgh University Students Vote Overwhelmingly for Boycott of Israeli Goods"

A motion to boycott Israel was overwhelmingly passed at the Edinburgh University Students Association (EUSA) General Meeting on Monday 14th March. In what was described as a ‘landslide’, the motion, ‘Boycott Israeli Goods in EUSA shops and supply chains’ received around 270 votes in favour, with only 20 students voting against...

...After the motion was discussed for around 15 minutes, it was put to a vote and the result was so comprehensive that no count was required. The passing of the motion led to rapturous applause in the George Square Lecture Theatre, where the General Meeting was held, and was by far the most welcomed result of the night.

Similar motions have been passed at SOAS, Manchester, and Sussex Universities in recent years. This latest result seems a clear indication that students in the UK are continuing to play a prominent role in the campaign for a just peace in Palestine.

The motion came in the wake of recent protests against Israeli officials speaking at the University. In February, student activists shut down a talk by Ishmael Khaldi, advisor to Israeli foreign minister Avidgor Lieberman, and, two weeks ago, over 100 students protested against the invitation of Israeli ambassador Ron Prosor to the University.

The proposer of the motion, second year Maths and Music student Daniel Beesley said “I am overwhelmed with the outcome of the General Meeting. It is great to see students of Edinburgh University once again standing up against injustice, just as they did during Apartheid South Africa. EUSA represents that views of students and we are sure they they will take on board what was clearly the opinion of the vast majority who attended the GM, and endorse the boycott.”

The motion’s seconder, Liam O’Hare, a student of International Relations, said: “Israel has occupied, ethnically cleansed and practised apartheid against the Palestinians for 63 years. The BDS movement seeks to force Israel to abide by international law and is gathering huge momentum year on year. I think the General Meeting proved that the student population at Edinburgh University do not want goods from an Apartheid state on campus and, despite the meeting narrowly not being quorate, I fully expect EUSA to act upon this motion.”


Hundreds of Students Demonstrate for Divestment against Apartheid Israel--

March 29, 2011


Carleton University administrators were forced Tuesday to abandon a meeting of the board of governors when some 200 students, yelling, chanting and shouting slogans about democracy, blocked access to the meeting room....

...The students claimed to be protesting the administration’s decision to prevent them from attending the board meeting, and to debate a motion that calls on the university to divest pension funds from companies that do business with Israel. A campus group, Students Against Israeli Apartheid, which was involved in organizing the protest, says the executive committee of Carleton’s board of governors blocked a motion seeking debate on the issue from being added to the meeting agenda, and notified them that only a prearranged group of students would be allowed to attend the public meeting.

The administration has taken the position that its pension fund committee has already reviewed the university investment program. Last fall, Carleton amended the rules governing the plan to state that “environmental, social and governance factors should be considered in investment decision-making.”

SAIA, however, wants Carleton to divest money from companies that deal with Israel, which they claim is violating international law in its relations with the Palestinians. The board’s executive committee turned down the student motion because it felt the pension committee had already addressed the issue.


"UJ severs ties with Israel's Ben Gurion"

MAIL & GUARDIAN (South Africa)
March 23, 2011


"The University of Johannesburg (UJ) has cut all ties with Ben Gurion University (BGU) in Israel.

"In a heated debate that led to a secret ballot, the senate voted on Wednesday by a strong majority to sever all ties with the university....

"...'Israeli apartheid'

The vote follows a UJ petition in September last year, calling on UJ academics and students to cut ties with BGU. According to Dasantha Pillay of the UJ Petition Committee, "As the UJ senate met today, over 400 South African academics, including nine vice-chancellors and deputy vice-chancellors [highest non-ceremonial university positions], had joined the campaign..."


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