JVP Statement on Ariel University Center
On July 17, 2012 Israeli government officials voted to recognize the Ariel University Center, the first Israeli university inside the West Bank. The establishment of a university within the settlement of Ariel is another example of Israel’s blatant disregard for international law and further highlights inequities caused by the Israeli occupation. While settlers will be able to attend classes with ease, Palestinians are barred from attending the university. Meanwhile, Palestinian students at Birzeit University, and other institutions in the West Bank, face countless barriers to achieving their education, including daily check-points, road blocks, and harassment by Israeli soldiers. Not only are students living in Gaza forbidden from attending schools in the West Bank and Jerusalem but since Israel will not provide exit visas for residents of Gaza, the United States has withdrawn Fulbright grants to students hoping to pursue advanced degrees at U.S. institutions. Palestinians with Jerusalem residency rights who choose to travel abroad to study, return to find their rights to return to their home revoked. Professors and faculty, like their students, also face academic barriers. Without freedom of movement it has become difficult to access necessary research materials and to communicate with one another and the international community of scholars with which they are apart. In the face of these barriers, students and faculty continue to learn, create new avenues for research, and produce first-rate scholarship.
Jewish Voice for Peace supports the Israeli and Palestinian activists and more than 1,000 Israeli academics who opposed and fought the establishment of the first settler university. JVP supports divestment from and boycotts of companies that proﬁt from Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem. This includes companies operating in or from occupied Palestinian territory, exploiting Palestinian labor and scarce environmental resources, providing materials or labor for settlements, or producing military or other equipment or materials used to violate human rights or to proﬁt from the Occupation. Download our full statement on the Palestinian-led BDS movement: http://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/content/jvp-issues#1
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 http://www.pchrgaza.org/portal/en/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6362:an-education-denied-report-on-the-impact-of-the-closure-of-border-crossings-on-students-from-the-gaza-strip-studying-abroad&catid=41:pchrclosurereports&Itemid=173 and
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/30/world/middleeast/30gaza.html?pagewanted=all (accessed July 19, 2012)
 http://chronicle.com/article/In-Palestine-Occupational/125246/ (accessed July 19, 2012)