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Campus pro-Israel groups call on UCLA to distance itself from SJP ahead of conference

They also criticize the timing in the aftermath of the Oct. 27 Pittsburgh synagogue shooting that left 11 Jewish worshippers dead.

"Israeli Apartheid Week," an annual anti-Zionist initiative, in May 2010 at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) campus. Credit: AMCHA Initiative.
"Israeli Apartheid Week," an annual anti-Zionist initiative, in May 2010 at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) campus. Credit: AMCHA Initiative.

In advance of next week’s National Students for Justice in Palestine conference, some 31 pro-Israel campus groups nationwide are calling on the University of California, Los Angeles, where the annual event will occur, to distance itself from SJP, which the groups said “fuels campus anti-Semitism and which seeks the elimination of the world’s only Jewish-majority country.”

The groups accused SJP of violating UCLA’s “Principles of Community”: “We do not tolerate acts of discrimination, harassment, profiling or other conduct causing harm to individuals on the basis of expression of race, color, ethnicity, gender, age, disability, religious beliefs, political preference, sexual orientation, gender identity, citizenship or national origin, among other personal characteristics. Such conduct violates UCLA’s Principles of Community and may result in imposition of sanctions according to campus policies governing the conduct of students, staff and faculty.”

The statement also criticizes SJP for questionable timing in the aftermath of the Oct. 27 shooting in Pittsburgh that left 11 Jewish men and women while praying in synagogue on Shabbat morning.

“The anti-Semitism of one man, Robert Bowers, led him to murder 11 Americans in a Pittsburgh synagogue simply because they were Jewish. It is absolutely critical that UCLA take the anti-Semitic rhetoric of SJP members seriously,” they stated.

The groups added, “Robert Bowers wrote on social media that ‘Jews are the children of Satan.’ Samer Alhato, one of the many anti-Semites set to speak or attend the conference, tweeted, ‘Anyone been to Jerusalem? I hated seeing a bunch of Jews there, but other than that it’s a beautiful city.”

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