Student magazine editor at Australian university fired for writing ‘death to Israel’

University of Adelaide’s student union dismisses Habibah Jaghoori for using language potentially threatening to the welfare of students

Illustrative: The University of Adelaide seen in a promotional video. (Screenshot/YouTube)
Illustrative: The University of Adelaide seen in a promotional video. (Screenshot/YouTube)

JTA — The student union at the University of Adelaide fired an editor of its campus student magazine after she called for “death to Israel” in an article last month.

In a statement on Tuesday, the board of YouX, the university’s student body, said that Habibah Jaghoori’s “recent public conduct would reasonably be perceived by any fair-minded person to be threatening the welfare of students at our University.”

Jaghoori, an editor of On Dit, the campus student magazine, concluded an article on August 4 with the phrase “Death to Israel.” The article was prompted by the three-day conflict last month between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip. The conflict killed close to 50 Palestinian civilians.

The YouX statement said it was not the article that prompted the firing of Jaghoori. Her removal was “specifically related to her conduct and behaviour since the article’s publication,” it said.

“Despite numerous opportunities to clarify her position and dispel any misinterpretation, she has continued to use language in public forums that can be clearly construed to support actions that could threaten the welfare of students,” the student board said.

It was not clear what public forums YouX was referring to, but the pro-Israel blogger Israelly Cool posted a video of a student union meeting at which Jaghoori repeatedly said “death to Israel” and giggled while saying it when challenged by Jewish students who said they found it threatening.

The Australasian Union of Jewish Students praised the decision. “Calling for violence and death rather than peace, dialogue and constructive criticism of Israel, rightly has no place on university campus,” it said.

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