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UCU statement in support of campus Palestine protests

2 May 2024

The University and College Union (UCU) sends our solidarity to the thousands of university students and staff across the world who are taking a stand against their institutions' complicity in Israel's genocidal war in Gaza.

In standing with the Palestinian people, students and staff taking part in encampments and peaceful protests on campuses across North America and now Britain and Europe are defending the core values of higher learning: freedom, democracy, and human dignity.

It has been shocking to witness militarised police forces invited onto campuses in the United States to violently shut down peaceful dissent. As peaceful encampments and occupations spread across Britain, we call on vice-chancellors to take a different approach. We are clear that antisemitism and Islamophobia have no place on our campuses or in our society, but freedom of speech and freedom of assembly within the law are fundamental human rights and civil liberties which must be upheld.

UCU supports all those standing against complicity in genocide, and for decolonisation, freedom, and equality. We reiterate our call for an immediate ceasefire, the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages, unrestricted access to humanitarian aid, and the lifting of the siege of Gaza.

UCU is the largest post-16 education trade union in the world, representing 125,000 workers in further and higher education across the UK.

Last updated: 2 May 2024