Viewport width =
September 17, 2012 | by  | in News |
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

Presidential Pilgrimage


At a forum on Auckland University’s quad last Wednesday, AUSA President Arena Williams was formally censured by Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and AUSA members for failing to consult students before taking an expenses paid ten day tour of Israeli occupied Palestine.

Williams was invited on the tour by Australian lobbying group the Australian/ Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, which annually sponsors visits for journalists, politicians, civil servants, and student leaders.

On the Facebook page, 190 people were listed as ‘going’ to the event, and there was much discussion both for and against Arena.

On the page, Williams said she had already apologised to three members of SJP in a meeting on July 25 after they had expressed concerns. She agreed to write a letter outlining her position in Craccum, the University’s student publication.

The SJP claimed that by accepting the offer she had endorsed the Israeli government’s actions and motioned that she “apologise for associating AUSA and it’s members with Israel” and “for her disregard for human rights, [and] for visiting an apartheid country under an international boycott.”

“I firmly believe that isolating Israel achieves little,” said Williams in her letter to Craccum.

“I was deeply sceptical about the offer. But I decided that the most important thing was to understand the issue, rather than forever observing from a purely academic perspective.”

Williams took unpaid leave to visit the country.

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.

Recent posts

  1. Access Denied – Invisible City
  2. Tapu and Noa
  3. It’s not you, it’s Hookup Culture
  4. VUWSA
  5. Touching on Taboo
  6. WOMAD
  7. National Urges Govt to be More Ambitious with Child Poverty Legislation
  8. Doin’ it for the Retweets: NZ Police’s Rainbow Car
  9. Postgrad Informer
  10. Sexual Violence Court Pilot

Editor's Pick

This Ain’t a Scene it’s a Goddamned Arm Wrestle

: - SPONSORED - Interior – Industrial Soviet Beerhall – Night It was late November and cold as hell when I stumbled into the Zhiguli Beer Hall. I was in Moscow, about to take the trans-Mongolian rail line to Beijing, and after finding someone in my hostel who could speak Englis