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Israel arrests 90 students at West Bank university

The Israeli occupation authorities has arrested 90 Palestinian students at Birzeit University in the occupied West Bank recently, a spokesman of the university’s Students Union has told Quds Press. On Saturday, the Israelis arrested the last batch of 12 students, all members of the Islamic bloc, including the SU’s secretary, Asmaa Qadah, 20, and four affiliated to other parties. Mohamed Zeid told Quds Press that most of the 90 students are spending months or years in administrative detention with neither charge nor trial.

“All of the arrests took place without any accusations or charges,” the SU spokesman explained. He noted that the occupation aims to “crack down” on the activities of the Islamic bloc. “It became clear that the Israelis are planning to weaken the Islamic Bloc so that it stops its academic services to the students.” The Students Union led by the Islamic bloc in Birzeit University has been creative on every level.

Zeid pointed out that the Palestinian Authority also arrests students who are members of the Islamic bloc, also without any clear reason. “Some of the university students take many years to obtain their degrees due to their repeated arrests by both the Israelis and the PA security agencies,” he added. It was noted that two professors and a non-teaching employee of Birzeit have also been arrested by the Israelis.

The university administration condemned the students’ detention. Birzeit will address other academic institutions and human rights organisations around the world to update them about the situation of its students under Israel’s occupation of Palestine.

In a statement, the university noted that Israel’s oppressive acts against the Palestinians, especially students, reinforce the need for an international boycott, including an academic boycott of Israeli institutions.

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