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Academic 'boycott' of Israelis stirs anger

May 28, 2008 at 12:47 PM

MANCHESTER, England, May 28 (UPI) -- Members of the University and College Union in England said they would consider severing ties with Israeli universities at their annual conference Wednesday.

Tom Hickey, who teaches philosophy at the University of Brighton, says the motion highlighting the "humanitarian catastrophe imposed on Gaza by Israel" is just shy of a full boycott, The Telegraph said.

"It is not a resolution calling for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions," Hickey said.

"We are urging people to reflect on whether it is appropriate for them to maintain their links with Israeli institutions," he continued. Hickey will present the motion.

The eminent Jewish physicist and Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg said he canceled plans to visit England in protest of the measure.

For his part, Israeli Ambassador to England Ron Prosor said the move runs counter to academic principles.

"Any call to an academic boycott on Israel is an act of folly since boycott stands as a contradiction of what academy symbolizes and represents," Prosor said.

Topics: Ron Prosor
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