Jewish students at UCL threatened

University provost announces plans to increase police presence around the Bloomsbury campus


B041E5 University College London UCL Portico and Octagon Building on the main campus in Gower Street London. Image shot 2008. Exact date unknown.

Jewish students at University College London say they have been targeted with death threats in the wake of renewed violence in Israel and Gaza.
UCL’s president and provost Dr Michael Spence sought to reassure students in a statement on Monday announcing plans to increase police presence around the Bloomsbury campus. 
Abusive messages included threats to remove students’ kippot and greet them on campus “Arab style”, according to screenshots shared by the UCL Jewish Society on Instagram. 
Another predicted its recipient would “burn in this life and the life after” and said it wished the online user death and a “curse for life.” It contained several Palestinian flag emojis. 
The lines were just some of the abusive messages sent to Jewish students in recent days, the JSoc said. 
The JSoc condemned the “horrific abuse and antisemitism online” suffered by Jewish students and societies since the onset of the violence in a statement with the UCL Israel Society.
They also criticised a statement about the conflict from sabbatical officers at the university students’ union that referred to an “internationally recognised apartheid”.
The student union's statement, posted on Friday, also condemned “reports of rising antisemitic hate crime in the UK.”
Dr Spence vowed to take disciplinary action “against anyone who is found to have engaged in antisemitism, either by word or deed” and condemned any abuse, harassment or bullying of Jewish and Israeli students.
He said he had been “particularly distressed that there have been a number of disturbing reports of antisemitic incidents and threats, online and in person, within the UCL community over the weekend.”
The provost added that security officers would remain vigilant and are working with local police to ensure increased police presence around the perimeter of the campus.

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