University heads deplore US campus protests, invite Jewish students and faculty to Israel

Gavriel Fiske is a reporter at The Times of Israel

Israel’s Association of University Heads has expressed “deep concern” over the “recent surge of severe violence, antisemitism, and anti-Israel sentiment” in protests across numerous leading universities in the United States.

“These disturbing events are often organized and supported by Palestinian groups, including those recognized as terrorist organizations. This troubling development has led to a climate where Israeli and Jewish students and faculty members feel compelled to hide their identities or avoid campuses altogether for fear of physical harm,” the group says in a statement.

American students protesting the Israel-Hamas war are demanding schools cut financial ties to Israel and divest from companies enabling its months-long conflict. Some Jewish students say the protests have veered into antisemitism and made them afraid to set foot on campus, partly prompting a heavier hand from universities.

“Extreme situations may require measures beyond the conventional tools available to university administrations… Freedom of expression and the right to demonstrate are vital to the health of any democracy and are especially crucial in academic settings. However, these freedoms do not include the right to engage in violence, make threats against communities, or call for the destruction of the State of Israel.” the statement continues.

“We offer our support to the Jewish and Israeli students and faculty facing these difficult circumstances. We will do our best to assist those of them who wish to join Israeli universities and find a welcoming academic and personal home,” the notice concludes.

The Association of University Heads is the umbrella governing body for Israel’s major universities.

Most Popular