Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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SJP, EJP and JVP resolution demands NU divest from companies with ties to Israel, protect student speech

Beatrice Villaflor/The Daily Northwestern
Student activists organized two rallies last week at The Rock to criticize Northwestern and other Universities’ ties to Israel and treatment of student protesters.

A resolution circulated Monday afternoon by Northwestern’s chapters of Educators for Justice in Palestine, Students for Justice in Palestine, and Jewish Voice for Peace demands the University protect the civil liberties of pro-Palestine speech and cut ties with Israeli institutions.

The resolution, which has garnered more than 940 signatures as of Tuesday evening, comes as students across the country are protesting their universities’ involvement in Israel’s war in Gaza, with some facing arrests. 

More than 100 Columbia students were arrested Thursday during a “Gaza Solidarity Encampment” organized by Columbia SJP. The arrests prompted NU SJP, among other chapters nationwide, to organize a rally Friday in solidarity with the students.

“American academic institutions have become hostile spaces for anti-war, anti-apartheid, and pro-Palestine speech,” the Monday resolution reads. “Northwestern University is no exception, curtailing speech and intimidating students and educators.”

The wave of protests on college campuses comes as Israel’s military action in Gaza has killed more than 34,000 Palestinians, according to Palestinian officials. Israel’s ground and air offensive follows the militant group Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel which killed about 1,200 Israelis, according to Israeli officials.

The resolution’s signatories call on University President Michael Schill to condemn alleged harassment and censorship of pro-Palestine students on campus.

In November, Schill announced the formation of the President’s Advisory Committee on Preventing Antisemitism and Hate and faced blowback from students and faculty for not calling more attention to Islamophobia on campus. In a January announcement, Schill identified Islamophobia as one of several forms of hate the committee plans to address.

Then, in February, Schill announced he was forming the President’s Advisory Committee on Free Expression and Institutional Speech.

NU’s Israel Innovation Project, which facilitates academic partnerships with Israeli institutions, was also a target of the Monday resolution. Signatories demanded the University end the IIP and other collaborations with Israeli institutions. They also asked NU to take a public stance advocating for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.

While NU doesn’t explicitly disclose all its investments, some members of the Board of Trustees have served as executives at companies that supply arms to Israel. The resolution demands that NU divest from all defense stocks and all companies that support what they call “Israeli apartheid.”

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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