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ZFA statement on Melbourne University condemnation of antisemitic student union motion

The Zionist Federation of Australia welcomes the strongly worded statement by Melbourne University that repudiated the antisemitic motion passed by the university’s student union, and rejected its call to boycott Israeli universities.

ZFA President Jeremy Leibler said, “We thank Melbourne University for its strong leadership on this matter. Given the antisemitic nature of the student union motion – which effectively denied the Jewish right to self-determination and redefined Judaism to suit its political purposes – this was the only responsible action the University could take. The statement sends an important message to Jewish students at Melbourne University that they are welcome and are free to express their Jewish identity without fear of intimidation.”

Mr Leibler continued, “We also urge the University to take the next step and adopt the IHRA working definition of antisemitism, as the federal government and opposition have done. Doing so would empower university staff and students to call out antisemitic conduct when it occurs and send a strong message of support and inclusion to Jewish students.”

Melbourne University called the student union motion antisemitic and repudiated the motion’s call for a boycott of Israeli universities and academics by saying how proud the University is of its partnerships with Israeli universities and scholars.