Syracuse follows Brandeis in halting ties with Al-Quds

US schools severed ties this week after Islamic Jihad held a Nazi-style demonstration on the Palestinian university’s campus.

November 22, 2013 01:00
1 minute read.
Sari Nusseibeh

Sari Nusseibeh 370. (photo credit: REUTERS/Ammar Awad)


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Syracuse University “indefinitely” suspended its relationship with Al-Quds University on Thursday, making it the second American university to sever ties this week after Islamic Jihad held a Nazi-style demonstration on the Palestinian university’s campus.

“We are very disappointed and saddened to have learned of these recent events at Al-Quds University,” said Kevin Quinn, Syracuse’s senior vice president for public affairs, in an email to The Jerusalem Post.

He said Syracuse’s Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism would end its ties with Al-Quds. The decision by Syracuse came three days after Brandeis University severed its relationship.

Meanwhile, the president of Al-Quds, Sari Nusseibeh, came under increasing pressure to respond to Brandeis President Frederick Lawrence’s demand to condemn “radical” behavior at the Islamic Jihad’s rally.

“We don’t believe in oppressing freedom of opinion, but respecting it.” Nusseibeh told The Media Line. “I said clearly about what happens in this rally that such manifestations are harmful to the university. The university will not allow the breaching of respect.”

It was a reversal from Nusseibeh’s previous public statement on the matter – he said the university was “often subjected to vilification campaigns by Jewish extremists” – but did not appear to be a sufficient apology for Brandeis officials.

“I think that Brandeis University leadership and faculty members who were previously involved in the partnership are very carefully monitoring the situation and I think we’re in wait-and- see mode,” Ellen de Graffenreid, Brandeis senior vice president for communications, told the Post on Thursday.

The event that sparked the uproar was a demonstration on November 5 at the Al- Quds campus, in which members of Islamic Jihad dressed in military uniforms, carried fake assault rifles and trampled on Israeli flags.

The event featured posters of suicide bombers and demonstrators raising their arms in a Nazi-style salute.

The Media Line contributed to this report.

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