We are here to support all of the students at Leeds Beckett who are being affected by the outbreak of violence in Israel and Palestine. We condemn the brutality and oppression affecting people in Occupied Palestinian Territories and citizens of Gaza, the acts of violence towards worshippers in the Holy Mosque of Al Aqsa during the holy month of Ramadan as well as the decisions of politicians in the State of Israel leading to this. We also condemn the attacks instigated by Hamas leaders that are actively putting civilians at risk. We hope for an end to the attacks and a quick de-escalation of violence. Families are losing their homes and innocent people are being injured or worse, killed. We need an international intervention to preserve human rights.
The violent nature of the Palestinian-Israeli crisis, the harm that has been done to both Palestinians and Israelis, and the often contradictory information that is presented around the crisis make this a difficult issue to discuss. Especially in a world where social media exacerbates these pre-existing divisions. We know that it is likely that addressing this topic will divide members of our community and we are aware of the increase in students suffering Anti-Semitic or Islamophobic reprisals here in Leeds. Here at Leeds Beckett Students' Union, we have zero tolerance for any form of harassment, prejudice, racial targeting or hate crime. It is not welcome on our campuses, and it certainly isn’t welcome in our communities. If you feel like you have been a victim of a hate crime, please contact the Students’ Union Hate Reporting Centre.
We urge our students to do their own research on the recent events and the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli crisis and to engage respectfully with other members of our community, whatever your views. The National Union of Students shared useful resources to help here.
Those who can are invited to donate to the MAP (Medical Aid for Palestinians), a charity with the task of building health services and local knowledge.