The City University of New York (CUNY) Law School Student Council has officially endorsed the global boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement and called on the university to sever ties with Israeli academics and institutions .
A resolution accusing Israeli academic institutions of complicity in the occupation and colonization of Palestine and of complicity in state violence against Palestinians was unanimously adopted by the Council of Law Students.
“The CUNY law student government proudly and unabashedly supports the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel,” said the resolution sponsored by more than 20 groups, including the National Lawyers Guild and the International Law Society.
READ: BDS resolution passed by University of Illinois student body in US
The resolution, passed earlier this month, further called on “the institution to divest itself and terminate contracts with all companies that contribute or profit from colonization, occupation and war crimes. Israelis ”. Details of the university’s investment in companies complicit in the Israeli occupation were included in the resolution.
CUNY has reportedly invested nearly $ 1.1 million in companies profiting from Israeli war crimes, including arms manufacturers Boeing, General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon.
Several other CUNY contracts with companies complicit in the occupation were mentioned. In fiscal year 2020-21, CUNY reportedly had more than $ 8.5 million in contracts “with companies that aid or profit from Israeli settlement, occupation and war crimes, including Dell, IBM, HP, Lenovo, Cisco and BMC Software “.
The resolution accused CUNY of being “directly complicit in the apartheid, genocide and ongoing war crimes perpetrated by the State of Israel against the Palestinian people through its academic collaborations with complicit Israeli academic institutions. “.
READ: 2 US universities pass pro-BDS resolutions against Israeli apartheid
CUNY criticized the resolution and noted that student organizations “speak for themselves and that the opinions or positions they express are entirely theirs and do not represent the views of CUNY or the 300,000 majority. members of our community “.
Responding to accusations that the resolution is anti-Semitic, Nerdeen Kiswani, vice president of the Student Government Association at CUNY Law School and chair of the school’s Palestinian Justice Students Section at the school, said that any discussion of Palestinian liberation or human rights is often characterized as anti-Semitic. .
“We have seen accusations of anti-Semitism systematically militarized against Palestinian organizers, to the point where it is in fact presupposed,” Kiswani reportedly said. “This is part of the call for BDS,” Kiswani said, noting that the movement is using “these tactics to pressure Israel to respect international law.”