Europe’s Largest University Cancels Event Linked to Amnesty International’s Damning Report on Israel

A sit-in was organized to protest La Sapienza University's decision to cancel an event on Israel's apartheid. (Photo: Supplied)

By Romana Rubeo

La Sapienza University of Rome, which is considered the largest university in Europe, has reportedly canceled on Monday evening an event aimed at presenting Amnesty International’s recent findings labeling Israel an apartheid state.

In a press release published on Tuesday, ‘Riabitiamo Mirafiori’ student collective said that the event – organized in cooperation with Young Palestinians of Rome, Palestinian Community of Roma and Lazio, BDS Roma, and Rome’s Solidarity Network with the Palestinian people – was a “precious opportunity to host an initiative on Palestine.”

“The Palestinian people have been subject every day, for decades, to the utmost humiliation of being treated as strangers in their own country; they have been suppressed, bombed, and targeted by brutal violence and institutionalized discrimination,” the press release reads.

The organizers said that the university contacted them on Monday, imposing the presence of a representative of the Union of Italian Jewish Youth (UGEI) as a prerequisite for holding the event. This imposition was considered unacceptable by the organizers.

“Through this decision, La Sapienza confirms its complete disregard for the basic human rights of the Palestinian people. A position that the university already made clear through its bilateral accords with Israeli institutions, such as Technion – Israel Institute of Technology of Haifa, which is linked to the Israeli military,” the students said in their statement.

“The university refused to host a representative of international human rights group Amnesty International, which produced a damning 278-page report establishing that Israel commits the ‘crime against humanity of apartheid’ against the Palestinian people.” 

The event was part of the Israeli Apartheid Week, a tool for mobilizing grassroots support on the global level for the Palestinian struggle for justice.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

- Romana Rubeo is an Italian writer and the managing editor of The Palestine Chronicle. Her articles appeared in many online newspapers and academic journals. She holds a Master’s Degree in Foreign Languages and Literature and specializes in audio-visual and journalism translation.
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