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March 1, 2017 2:38 pm

British Prime Minister Calls on UK Universities to ‘Swiftly Address’ Campus Antisemitism

avatar by Lea Speyer

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British Prime Minister Theresa May. Photo: Screenshot.

British Prime Minister Theresa May during PMQs. Photo: Screenshot.

British Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday called on UK universities to “investigate and swiftly address” campus antisemitism.

“Higher education institutions have a responsibility to ensure that they provide a safe and inclusive environment for all students, and we expect them to have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law,” May said, during the traditional weekly Prime Minister’s Questions Parliament session.

She also noted that Minister for Universities and Science Jo Johnson had urged college administrations to “follow the government’s lead in adopting the IHRA (International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance) definition of antisemitism” and had “actually recently written to remind these institutions of [the government’s] expectations.”

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May was responding to a query from Conservative MP Bob Blackman, who said: “This week, Jewish students are being subjected to intimidation, fear and antisemitism as a result of so-called Israel Apartheid Week. What action can my Right Honorable friend make sure [sic] that chancellors and principals ensure that antisemitism is not allowed to prosper on campuses?”

Blackman was referring to Israeli Apartheid Week, a series of annual BDS events held during February and March at universities around the world, and to the reported increase in incidents targeting Jewish students.

Members of leading advocacy groups in the UK recently told The Algemeiner that they were gearing up to “proactively” counter these events. The country’s former chief rabbi, Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, released an animated video on Monday to arm students with the tools to confront anti-Israel activity on campus.

Watch Prime Minister Theresa May address campus antisemitism:

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