A Letter of Support to Student and Staff Protesters

To the courageous students and staff of Columbia University, and to all those protesting at universities across the globe:

We stand with you in unwavering support as you raise your voices against the ongoing human rights violations against the Palestinian people in Gaza. Your unwavering commitment to truth and justice in the face of immense suffering is truly inspiring.

The systematic silencing of dissent, as exemplified by Columbia University President Shafik’s suppression of peaceful protests, is a blatant disregard for the very essence of academic freedom. Universities should be crucibles of open discourse, not echo chambers that silence uncomfortable truths.

The narrative of Israeli dominance and the demonisation of Palestinians are crumbling. You, the young generation, are recognising the undeniable vulnerability of the Palestinian people and their fundamental right to life and self-determination.

We applaud your refusal to be swayed by misinformation and your insistence on holding your institutions accountable for their complicity in the ongoing tragedy. Your demand to sever ties with entities that perpetuate the Israeli occupation and the brutal oppression of Palestinians deserves to be heard loud and clear.

This is not about antisemitism; it is about standing up against the atrocities committed against the Palestinian people. It is about demanding an end to the illegal occupation and the recognition of Palestinians’ basic human rights.

Universities have a fundamental duty to:

  • Protect peaceful protests: The use of force against students and staff exercising their right to free speech is utterly unacceptable.
  • Embrace open debate: Unpopular views, even when uncomfortable, should be a catalyst for learning and critical thought.
  • Champion academic freedom: Suppressing dissent undermines the very foundation of a university’s purpose.

We urge the faculties of all universities to follow the lead of Columbia’s Senate and hold their administrations accountable for upholding these core values.

We stand with you, the students and staff protesters, as you courageously advocate for justice and challenge the status quo. Your unwavering commitment to truth and the Palestinian people’s right to freedom is an inspiration to us all.

Network of Iraqi Scientists Abroad (NISA)



Leave a Reply