U of Chicago SJP, MEChA, and other campus groups condemn Israel’s assault on Gaza in statement

Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at the University of Chicago drafted and released this statement today calling on students, faculty, and the general public to condemn Israel’s latest invasion of the Gaza Strip as well as its ongoing siege and occupation of the territory. Campus groups, local SJP chapters, and Chicago groups signed on to the statement.

Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of Chicago and allied student groups condemn the latest invasion of the Gaza Strip

We unequivocally condemn Israel’s ongoing assault on the Gaza Strip. We join our voices with those who demand an immediate termination of military activity in Gaza as well as a resolute end to the ongoing siege of the territory.

At least 158 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli military offensives since Wednesday with over 1,500 reported injured so far. Three Israelis have also been confirmed dead. The deaths come after a two-week lull in violence was broken by an Israeli incursion into Gaza that killed a 12-year old boy while he played soccer. Israel’s launch of Operation “Pillar of Defense” has so far resulted in the indiscriminate shelling of Gazan civilian centers, naval bombardments of coastal refugee camps, the targeting of reporters and medical crews, and the calling up of Israeli reservists for a possible ground invasion.

In light of these events and bearing in mind the atrocities of Israel’s invasion in 2008-2009, we call on you to stand in opposition to the violence and human rights abuse inflicted upon the Palestinian people by the Israeli government and military.

We ask you as taxpayers to put pressure on your elected officials and civic leaders to reconsider their unconditional support for Israel in light of its numerous violations of human rights and international law. In recent years, U.S. citizens, through their tax dollars, have contributed a third of Israel’s military budget, and as such are partially responsible for the manufacture, delivery, and deployment of many of the weapons being used on Gaza’s civilian population and infrastructure.

We call on you as students and mentors to voice your support for the occupied people of Palestine and to organize actions and demonstrations to raise awareness about the ongoing invasion and siege.

We urge you as critical thinkers and concerned citizens to honor and adopt the Palestinian civil society’s call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with international human rights laws and until the Palestinian right to self-determination is guaranteed. Your aid in pressuring Israel in this way will help put an end to future Israeli military incursions as well as the occupation as a whole.

SJP at the University of Chicago is dedicated to raising awareness about the injustices concerning the occupation of the Palestinian people. For inquiries and further details, contact SJP at the University of Chicago at sjpuchicago@uchicago.edu.

Endorsed and supported by:

University of Chicago Registered Student Organizations (RSOs)
The Buddhist Association
Hong Kong Student Association (HKSA)
Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán (MEChA)
Muslim Students Association (MSA)
Students Organizing United with Labor (SOUL)

Local Students for Justice in Palestine chapters
DePaul University Students for Justice in Palestine
Loyola University Chicago Students for Justice in Palestine
Northeastern Illinois University Students for Justice in Palestine
Northwestern University Students for Justice in Palestine
Saint Xavier University Students for Justice in Palestine
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Students for Justice in Palestine
University of Illinois at Chicago Students for Justice in Palestine

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