(JTA) – More than 1,350 academics from around the world have signed a petition opposing faculty or student boycotts of Israel.
The online petition of the Faculty for Academic Freedom was posted last week.
“We, the undersigned academics, vigorously support free speech and free debate but we oppose faculty or student boycotts of Israel’s academic institutions, scholars and students,” the introduction to the petition reads.
Academics from colleges and universities in countries such as France, Britain, the Netherlands and Russia, as well as the United States, Canada and Israel, have signed the petition.
An academic boycott “violates the very principle of academic freedom,” the petition says. It also states, “The factual record does not support the accusations and narratives of the BDS movement. Many are based on overstatements, cherry picked evidence, outright falsehood, or on disputed or highly biased data.”
The boycott also harms prospects for the peace it is calling for, according to the petition.
“By demonizing and seeking to isolate one of the two parties to the peace process, the anti-Israel BDS movement sets itself apart from the global consensus for peace,” the petition says.