UK universities invest an estimated £450 million ($579.5 million) in companies complicit in Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights, including through supplying weapons and technology to the Israeli military, and investing in Israel’s illegal settlement economy, new research has shown.
Research released by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign on the week of the UN Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, which will be marked on Friday, “established the investments of 44 UK Universities in complicit companies, which totals at least £129,239,973.60 [$167 million]”.
PSC added it then calculated an average “complicity percentage” for the sector and applied it to the 53 universities who refused to hand over information on their investments.
Mohammed Ali, President of King’s College London Action Palestine (KCL), said: “As a Palestinian student, I am disgusted to find out that my institution has complicit links with Israeli apartheid. We will continue to campaign with students across the country to demand our universities abide by their ethical policies, and remove all links with companies and institutions complicit in human rights abuses.”
The release of the exclusive research comes after students across the country organise protests, rallies, and events as part of a national Apartheid Off Campus Day of Action on Friday, seeking to highlight how universities’ investment and partnership policies tacitly support and enable Israel’s ongoing violations of international law and human rights.
In February, students at the University of Manchester crashed a board meeting to demand governors divest from Caterpillar, a company involved in Israeli war crimes against Palestinians.
Caterpillar supplies many of the bulldozers the Israeli army uses to demolish Palestinian homes, both in the occupied West Bank and in present-day Israel.
Huda Ammori, campaigns officer at PSC, expressed how shocking it is that universities support Israel’s human rights abuses by investing in such companies, even though the majority claim to hold “so-called ethical investment policies”.
Israel’s well-documented oppression of the Palestinian people, amounting to the crime of apartheid under international law, can only be maintained because companies continue to provide weapons and other support to the Israeli military, and to invest in Israel’s illegal settlement industry.
“We will continue to support students across the UK in taking action to demand that their institutions divest from complicit companies, and get apartheid off campus.”