[The following letter was issued by the Middle East Studies Association on 4 February 2020 in response to Hebrew University's letter on police activity in the Issawiya neighborhood]
Professor Asher Cohen
President Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Professor Menahem Ben-Sasson
Chancellor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Professor Barak Medina
Rector, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Dear President Cohen, Chancellor Ben-Sasson, and Rector Medina,
Thank you for your 23 January 2020 response to our letter dated 22 January 2020.
In your letter you stated that Hebrew University “is not involved in any decisions about police activity in Issawiyah or any other area.” Like our colleagues who are members of Academia for Equality, we are disturbed that such a position disregards the university administration’s duty to maintain the autonomy of the university campus as a free space.
In addition, your letter failed to address the question of the closure of the southern entrance to Issawiyah, which renders the university a de facto partner in the collective punishment of the neighborhood’s residents.
Along with the members of Academia for Equality, we repeat our call for the administration of the University to declare its solidarity with Issawiyah and to act immediately to demilitarize the campus.
We look forward to your response.
Dina Rizk Khoury
Professor, George Washington University
Chair, Committee on Academic Freedom
Professor, University of Southern California
cc: Academia for Equality