100 Palestinian Notts students protest talk from former IDF soldier Yoseph Haddad

A mass walk out was planned to protest the talk

Palestian students protested against the invitation of speaker Yoseph Haddad to give a talk on University Park Campus. The protests took place outside the Pope building yesterday (8th February) at around 2pm.

Yoseph Haddad has previously been filmed shouting at Palestinians at Tel Aviv University telling them “to go back to Jenin”.

The talk entitled “Life in Israel as an Arab” was organised and promoted by the Nottingham University Conservative Association (NUCA). Haddad was speaking in conjunction with Stand With Us UK, a charity that aims to educate people on Israel and fight against anti-semitism in the UK.

In the advertisement posted to the NUCA’s instagram page on the 30th January it details how Yoseph Haddad is an IDF combat veteran and after being critically injured in the Second Lebanon War he decided to dedicate his life showcasing the truth about the State of Israel.

It also states that Haddad has been working to improve relations between Arabs by bridging social gaps in Israel.

Protestors had organised a mass walk out of the event with around 80 to 100 students who sat in the lecture hall waiting for Yoseph Haddad to arrive. Within five minutes of the talk, the students protesting stood up and walked out of the lecture theatre where the talk was being held. They proceeded to outside of the Pope building and began chanting.

Hassan Ul-Haq, a third year criminology student, who participated within the protests expressed the need to protest this event saying it is “pertinent to the struggle itself”. He claims that Yoseph Haddad “refuses to accept that Israel is an apartheid state” and that “he doesn’t want to have an open discussion instead spreading misinformation and lies.”

He also claims that himself and other protestors were denied entry for the Q&A section of the talk.

Daniel Dieppe, president of the Nottingham University Conservative Association said: “NUCA is proud to have hosted the ‘Life in Israel as an Arab’ event on Wednesday. We wholeheartedly support freedom of speech and were disappointed that protestors did not listen to a single thing Yoseph Haddad said about Israel, with multiple individuals cursing him in a quite unsavoury manner on their way out.

“Ultimately, those who remained heard his view on why Israel is an unperfected but not apartheid state and questioned him about racism he had experienced in Israel.

“Protestors were denied entry back into the auditorium by security who rightly (without asking us) did so as the Q&A was intended to respond to issues raised in the talk, which they sadly declined to attend.”

The Tab Nottingham has contacted Yoseph Haddad for comment. 

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