Sheffield Students’ Union vote ‘Yes’ for BDS

Students from the University of Sheffield this week passed the motion below during a referendum of the whole student body. Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) is now Union policy and the Union is committed to campaigning for divestment in the University. Sheffield Students’ Union Palestine Society are absolutely thrilled by the decision and know that they have the support of the Union President and most of the union officers. They are determined to move forward and make the new policy really effective this year. First target: a Veolia waste disposal contract which is up for renewal over the next few months – the campaign to exclude them from tendering started over the summer.

The students who were at the forefront of campaigning for this referendum also told Boycott Israel Network (BIN) that they gained a lot of confidence and inspiration in what they were doing from attending the UK Student Palestine Conference in Manchester in September.

 

End the Israeli Occupation

Israel is involved in a brutal military occupation of the Palestinian territories (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEukvh_Ajv4). The occupation is responsible for widespread and ongoing human rights abuses against the local Palestinian population, including destruction of homes, theft of land & water resources, imprisonment without trial, torture of prisoners, and construction of Israeli settlements on occupied Palestinian land.

This is in violation of international law, including the Fourth Geneva Convention, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights & the Charter of the United Nations. The settlements have also been declared illegal by the International Court of Justice and the UK government.

The Union believes that Israel should end its occupation of the Palestinian territories and allow the return of Palestinian refugees in accordance with international law.

The Union resolves to:-

  • Inform our members of the background to the situation in Israel/Palestine and to commemorate Palestine Solidarity Day, working with relevant groups such as the Sheffield Students’ Union Palestine Society.
  • Lobby our university to divest itself from and terminate any contracts with companies that are complicit in the occupation of the Palestinian territories.
  • Join the global movement for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it ends the occupation and complies with international law (http://www.bdsmovement.net/call).
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