Manchester student suspended for occupation in protest of university links to Israel

The student’s suspension bans any presence on campus except for academic or welfare purposes

A University of Manchester student has been suspended over allegations that they took part in a protest against the institution’s “ties to Israel”.

The individual was said to have taken part in the student occupation of the Simon Building in March, which saw occupiers demand the university ends its partnership with arms companies, cuts its ties with Tel Aviv University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and stop what they referred to as “unethical research”.

The anonymous student now claims to have been “personally targeted and harassed by the Senior Leadership Team for being outspoken and criticising them regularly”, Manchester Evening News reported. 

Around 50 students occupied the Simon Building from March 19th to the 22nd in a protest organised by UoM Rent Strike, Youth Front for Palestine and Manchester Leftist Action. Students hung flags and banners from the building’s windows which read “UoM blood on your hands” and “Freedom for Palestine”.

Demanding the university adopted a policy ensuring that all research is ethical and doesn’t contribute towards the arms trade, the student occupation coincided with the one year anniversary of the UoM rent strike 2023, which saw students being forcibly removed from the Simon Building in a 5am raid.

It is understood that the suspended student has previously faced disciplinary action for participation in protests. Following their participation in last month’s occupation, the individual has now been banned from campus except for academic or welfare purposes.

The student alleges that they have been the victim of “personally targeted and harassed” by university staff for “being outspoken and criticising them regularly”. The university confirmed the student has been suspended but would not comment further.

A University of Manchester spokesperson said: “We do not comment on the detail of actions or investigations regarding individual students particularly while they are ongoing. We can confirm that a student has been subject to a partial suspension which allows them to attend campus for activity directly related to their studies, or access to welfare support. Further details remain confidential.”

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University of Manchester uses bailiffs to evict rent strikers from the Simon building in 5am raid

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