TORONTO, Nov. 19, 2012 /CNW/ - In a momentous vote that adds to the
growing list of student unions in Canada, York University's Graduate
Students' Association (YUGSA) voted overwhelmingly in favor of a
resolution to endorse the global campaign for Boycott, Divestment and
Sanctions (BDS) against Israeli apartheid.
The resolution was drafted in response to the 2005 Palestinian civil
society call for BDS as a means to pressure the state of Israel to
comply with international law and end its occupation of the West Bank
and Gaza; to allow Palestinian refugees their internationally
guaranteed right to return to their homes and villages; and to grant
equal rights to Palestinian citizens of Israel.
"With 29 votes in favor and 7 opposed, the Graduate Students'
Association's Council passed the resolution to endorse the BDS
campaign, specifically urging the University to withdraw its
investments from Hewlett Packard, Northrop Grumman, BAE Systems,
Lockheed Martin and other companies profiting from Israeli human rights
violations, war crimes and oppression," said Wangui Kimari, VP
Campaigns of the YUGSA executive. YUGSA represents over 6,100 graduate
students at York University, Canada's third largest University.
This resolution passed in the midst of the latest Israeli bombing
campaign in Gaza, which had reportedly taken the lives of 16
Palestinians, including 3 children at the time of the vote. "It is
important for organizations to not pretend to be neutral while
profiting from human rights violations. And we, as students, need to
take a stand against apartheid wherever it exists, from Canada to
Palestine," said Mona Ayyoub a Students Against Israeli
Apartheid York (SAIA York) member. SAIA York plans to continue to
educate the York University community about the BDS campaign and is
working on a petition to encourage York University's undergraduate
students' union, the largest students' union in Canada, to endorse the
BDS motion later this school year.
SOURCE: YORK UNIVERSITY GRADUATE STUDENTS' ASSOCIATION
For further information:
Hammam Farah, Students Against Israeli Apartheid York, 416-669-8144
Wangui Kimari, VP Campaigns, YUGSA, 647-460-5821