Glasgow University sit-in anti-Israel protest


By Simon Friend
February 12, 2009
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Earlier this week, around 70 students from Glasgow University organised a sit-in to protest against Israel’s actions in Gaza and the involvement of arms manufacturers with the university. The students occupied the computer science building, claiming this department to have major links with the British defence and aerospace company BAE systems. The Stop the War Coalition, which led the occupation together with Action Palestine and Amnesty International, presented a petition signed by over 1,000 students and staff, demanding that the university should sever links with such corporations, as well as boycotting all Israeli produce, such as Eden Springs water, which is currently sold on the campus. Raymie Kiernan, who has taken an active role in the sit-in, said: “We will remain in occupation indefinitely until our demands are met and will not negotiate with security guards.” The sit-in, which has seen students chanting slogans such as “Money for jobs and education, not for war and occupation”, follows a wave of similar events across numerous British campuses. A spokesman for the University of Glasgow said: “The university respects the right to freedom of speech, but the rights of students and staff to engage in their normal business must always be respected. The university will take appropriate action if the occupation causes serious disruption to staff or students.”

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