The National Union of Students’ (NUS) dismissal of its Arab/Muslim president exposes the routine denial of space in the political system to critics of Israel.
Shaima Dallali was removed from the post to which she was elected in March this year after a witchhunt by pro-Israeli groups opposed to her vociferous championing of Palestinian rights.
They accused her of anti-Semitism for a social media post she made when she was just 17, repeating a slogan based on the Islamic prophesy that Muslim armies will one day return to liberate the holy land.
The NUS launched an inquiry into the post led by the barrister Rebecca Tuck, a Zionist and staunch supporter of Israel, whom it appointed after close consultation with the Union of Jewish Students, a notorious apologist for Israel’s occupation and atrocities.
The stitch-up concluded yesterday in the finding of anti-Semitism against the Tunisian-Sudanese Dallali, a story that was broken by the pro-Israel Jewish Chronicle even before Ms Dallali was notified.
IHRC is shocked but not surprised to see another supporter of justice for Palestinians cancelled from the country’s political framework. The National Union of Students (NUS) is a confederation that represents at least 7 million students across the United Kingdom and is an established stepping stone for aspiring politicians.
Dallali’s treatment echoes that of another Muslim president who faced an inquiry for her trenchant criticism of Israel and its supporters in the West. Malia Bouattia, who led the Union from 2016-2017, also faced an inquiry and was told to apologise for her views, something she bravely refused to do.
IHRC chair Massoud Shadjareh said: “The weaponisation of anti-Semitism has succeeded once again in cancelling the political participation of another critic of Israel. This nefarious tactic is increasingly being deployed to muzzle people from calling out the apartheid system in Israel. We believe that the NUS is not fit for purpose. Instead of defending its members and protecting their freedom of speech, it is persecuting them at the behest of one very narrow political interest group.”
IHRC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.
Islamic Human Rights Commission
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