International statement in support of banned Israeli Apartheid Week in Paris

 BIAC signed on to the following international statement, organized by the Paris 8 Palestine Collective, denouncing the action of the President of the University Paris 8, cancelling an Israeli Apartheid Week event at the university. We urge that the conference is reinstated and that student rights must be protected.

The direction of the University Paris 8 yields to pressure from the CRIF and cancels a conference

We learn with consternation that the President of the University Paris 8 has decided to retract the authorization that had been previously granted for a conference entitled “Israel, a state of apartheid?” This initiative, to be held on the 27th and 28th February, intended to bring together specialists from France, Italy, the United Kingdom and Belgium in order to have a rational discussion about the aforementioned subject matter.

Using the pretext of possible “trouble to public order”, the President of Paris 8 has retracted permission for the conference, despite there having been detailed knowledge of the program, the speakers and a budget allocated by the management of the university for the event.

What is clear is that the intolerable pressure exerted by the Representative Council of Jewish Institutions of France (CRIF) has led the President of Paris 8 to retract its permission for the event. In a recently published statement, the CRIF denounced the conference, waving the threat of possible disturbance to “public order”.

Is it no longer possible to exercise freedom of speech in French universities in relation to the field of the politics of Israel and Palestine? According to the CRIF and its followers, the response is no. This buckling in the face of pressure from the CRIF is not unusual. Last year it succeeded in shutting down a forum for discussion, which resulted in the cancellation of a conference at the Ecole Normal Supérieur (ENS).

The cancellation of the upcoming conference and last year’s at the ENS is a clear demonstration of how the management of a public academic institution will yield to the injunctions and threats from a corpus that presents itself as the voice of the entire Jewish community in France but is in reality a mouthpiece for the Israeli embassy.

We ask the President of Paris 8 to reverse this decision and permit the conference to take place. Freedom of expression and academic liberties are far too precious to be smothered by intimidation campaigns.

Endorsing organizations (in alphabetical order) :

14 Friends of Palestine, Marin, California

Al Awda, The Netherlands

Al Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition

Al-Awda NY- The Palestine Right to Return Coalition

Al-Nakba Awareness Project

American Arab Forum, New Jersey, USA

Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine.

Association Belgo-Palestinienne (ABP)

Bay Area Chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace

Bay Area Women in Black, Oakland, California, USA

BDS Catalonia

BDS Group Berlin

BDS South Africa

Birmingham Peace Project

Birthright Unplugged

Boycott Israeli Apartheid Campaign – Vancouver

Breed Platform Palestina (Haarlem), The Netherlands

BRICUP, British Committee for the Universities of Palestine

Central New York Working for a Just Peace in Palestine & Israel – Syracuse New York, USA

Centre international d’études pédagogiques – CIEP

Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA), Toronto, Canada

CODEPINK Women for Peace

Comitato Pace, Disarmo e Smilitarizzazione del Territorio- Campania

Comitato Palestina Bologna, Italy

Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine, Oak Park Illinois

COMMIT – Community Leadership Institute: Growing Justice & Accountability

Coordinamento Pace e Solidarieta, Parma, Italia

Cornell Student for Justice in Palestine (JSP)

CU-Divest! Don’t Invest in Israeli Apartheid

Ecumenical Working Group for Middle East Peace, Philadelphia, PA USA

EPACBI, European Platform for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel

Forum Palestina, Italy

Free Palestine and Secure Israel

Free Palestine Movement

Friends of Palestine (WI)

Haags Vredesplatform, The Netherlands

Hope Foundation, The Netherlands

Humanistisch Vredesberaad, The Netherlands

ICACBI, Italian Campaign for the Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel

Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter

InterDenominational Advocates for Peace in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

International Committee of the National Lawyers Guild, US

International Socialist Organization (ISO), USA

International Solidarity Movement – Italy (Turin)

International Solidarity Movement – Italy (Udine)

International Solidarity Movement – Northern California

Internationale Socialisten (IS), The Netherlands

Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA)

Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions-USA

Justice First Foundation, Inc.

Jews for Justice for Palestinians, London

Justice for Palestinians, San Jose, CA USA

Justice Voices

Keep Hope Alive Olive Tree Campaign-USA

Labor for Palestine – New York City Labor Against the War

Labor for Palestine (U.S.)

Leidse Actiegroep Stop de Bezetting, The Netherlands

Miami-Dade Green Party

MidEast: JustPeace (Traverse City, Michigan, USA)

Nederlands Arabische Stichting (NAS), The Netherlands

Nederlands Palestina Komitee, The Netherlands

New Profile

New School Students for Justice in Palestine,

New School University, New York, NY, USA.

Osservatorio EuroMediterraneo e del Mar Nero

Palestijnse Gemeenschap Nederland (PGN), The Netherlands

Palestina Komitee Nijmegen, The Netherlands

Palestina Komitee Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Palestina nel cuore (Rome, Italy)

Palestine Solidarity Committee – Harvard College

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI)

Peace Action Montgomery (Montgomery County, Maryland, USA)

Penn for Palestine, University of Pennsylvania

PennBDS, University of Pennsylvania

People of Faith CT

Right To Education, Birzeit University, Palestine

Saint Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network

San José Peace and Justice Center

Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights – University of British Columbia (SPHR – UBC)

Stanford Students for Palestinian Equal Rights

Stichting Palestijnse Vrouwen in Nederland, The Netherlands

Stichting Palestina, The Netherlands

Stichting Stop de Bezetting, The Netherlands

Students Allied for Freedom & Equality, University of Michigan

Students for Justice in Palestine-  University of New Mexico

Talliq, The Netherlands

Task Force on Peace with Justice in Palestine/Israel of United Methodist Upper New York Conference

Temple University Students for Justice in Palestine

The Committee for Peace in Israel of East Hampton, NY USA

The Free Palestine Subcommittee, US

The Norwegian comitee for academic and cultural boycott of the state of Israel (AKULBI), Norway

Tiye International, The Netherlands

Trade Union Friends of Palestine (Irish Congress of Trade Unions)

Transnational Institute (TNI), The Netherlands

U4P, The Netherlands

Un ponte per…

Universitaire Activisten, The Netherlands

US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel

US Palestine Community Network- (USPCN)

US Palestinian Community Network

VAMEP – Virginains for Middle East Peace,  Arlington, VA

Verenigde Wereldburgers voor Internationaal Recht, The Netherlands

Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel

Veterans for Peace in the USA, New Hampshire

Vrijwillige Internationale Aktie (VIA), The Netherlands

Vrouwen in het Zwart, The Netherlands

Way to Jerusalem – Church of the Savior , Washington DC

Werkgroep Keerpunt, The Netherlands

WILPF Nederland, The Netherlands

Yorkshire Palestine Cultural Exchange, Sheffield

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