The BRISMES Committee on Academic Freedom has written to the president of the David Yellin Academic College of Education, Professor Yoseph Frost, to express our profound concern over the suspension of Professor Nurit Peled Elhanan.
We are troubled by what appears to be a widespread clampdown on academic freedom and freedom of speech in Israel directed primarily against students and staff who express empathy towards Palestinians living in Gaza.
It is precisely during times of war that academic freedom and freedom of expression are tested and need to be assiduously and robustly protected. This will inevitably and necessarily include defending the right of individuals to express views that others may find offensive or challenging. We therefore call on Professor Frost to rescind the letter sent to Professor Peled Elhanan, to publicly restate their commitment to academic freedom and freedom of expression on the David Yellin College of Education campus, to adhere to due process in any future investigations into university code breaches, and to ensure the freedom of students and staff to express themselves, even when their views may be the views of a minority or may challenge the dominant viewpoint.