Following a decision by the Spanish Housing Ministry to disqualify a group of Israeli students from participating in next month's Solar Decathlon in Madrid because they were from Ariel University in northern Samaria, the National Union of Israeli Students on Thursday sent a letter to both the Spanish and European student unions protesting the move.
"It's unfortunate that irrelevant, faulty political motives have led to the decision to remove the application," the letter stated. "We condemn the blatant harm that this has caused to academic freedom and ask you to help us act against this troublesome phenomenon."
The Spanish Housing Ministry has defended its decision on the grounds that the university is "located in occupied territories", and has cited "European Union political guidelines" as the basis for the disqualification.
Ariel University has also fired back, and in a response given earlier this week, the university called the decision "anti-academic", and one that "harms some 10,000 students who study at the University, including the 500 Arab students who study here, and particularly the Jewish and Arab students of the School of Architecture.