Tents and banners in support of Palestine early in the morning on the University of Birmingham campus

Encampment for Palestine at UoB

Joint statement with Birmingham UCU
We have been made aware that students have set up an encampment at the University of Birmingham, as part of the global solidarity movement calling for an immediate and lasting ceasefire in the Gaza/Israel conflict, and calling for an end to all support for Israel in its attack and occupation of Palestine, including a call for an end to the sale of arms, and divestment to ensure that the University provides no financial support for the ongoing illegal occupation of Palestine.

As UNISON have done nationally, we stand firmly with the right to peaceful protest in seeking an immediate ceasefire, access to humanitarian assistance and an end to the blockade, and call on the University to demonstrate its belief in free speech by respecting the right of the students to protest on their own campus.

We reiterate the words of UCU’s Black Members’ Standing Committee, “that calling attention to the systematic discrimination of Palestinians and/or criticising the Israeli government for its contravention of international law must not be conflated with antisemitism.”

Further, we remind our members, and the University management, that our unions are committed to reaffirming their commitment to solidarity with Palestinian liberation. This includes a commitment to protect students and staff under attack for supporting the cause of the Palestinian people.

We welcome and admire the actions of University of Birmingham students taking action today, in calling for an end to an onslaught that observers and experts have repeatedly decried as an act of genocide.

Any attempt by the University of Birmingham management to silence those who call for peace should be roundly rejected, and we offer our support and solidarity to those who refuse to remain silent.

We urge UoB management to respect the peaceful student encampment, as a testament to freedom of expression, and to constructively engage with student demands

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