London Olympic organizer rejects British boycott

Sebastian Coe, the British Olympic champion and chief organizer of the 2012 games in London, chastised efforts of a British professors' union to shun Israeli colleagues in protest of the occupation of Palestinian territories. "The fact that I'm here at this time shows what I think about the academic boycott," Coe said during a panel discussion Wednesday at the University of Haifa, according to a release issued by the university. Last week, delegates of Britain's largest union of university and college teachers asked local branches to discuss a boycott. If approved, the measure would prevent Israeli and British professors and university staff members from collaborating on projects. Bill Rammell, Britain's education minister, has said the proposed boycott "does nothing to promote the Middle East peace process."