Sunday, November 9, 2008

Urgent: Student faces expulsion for refusing to shake hands with Shimon Peres

There is a petition worded in a reasonable and mild fashion. Please sign, everybody. If you have a muse and a moment of time, do write a personal letter to the University President and cc other dignitaries, for addresses see below.


Victoria Buch

President of the University, Professor Menachem Magidor:

Dean of Students, Professor Esther Shami:

Manager of Accomodation, Mr Yitzhak Hofy:

President of the State of Israel, Mr Shimon Peres:

Director of the Peres Centre for Peace, Dr Ron Pundak: 

From: Free Speech at HUJI <free.speech. huji@gmail. com>
Date: 2008/11/8
Subject: Urgent call for help: Student faces expulsion for refusing to shake hands with Shimon Peres
To: Dimi Reider (dimireider@gmail. com)


Dear friends, 


We ask for your urgent support in the case of Ali Baher. Ali is a student at the Hebrew University, who has been kicked out from his dorm room, and is facing a possible suspension from his studies, simply because he refused to shake hands with Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel 


According to Haaretz, Ali was studying in the university library, when the President walked in and began shaking hands with students. Ali refused to shake hands with Peres, saying that he was a child murderer and reminding him of the Qana massacre, which was carried out under Peres's premeirship. 

When the president left the library, Ali was assaulted by security guards, who questioned him for three hours before serving him with a demand to appear before the discplinary committee of the university, on suspicion of "inappropriate conduct". This charge can potentially lead to Ali's suspension from the university. The guards also confiscated Ali's student card, which restricts his access to essential university services, such as, indeed, the library. 

Later on this week, Ali came home to the dorms to find his room broken into, with political stickers torn off and the door handle vandalized. He submitted a complaint to the security staff, and was visited in the morning by the manager of the dorms, Mr Yitzhak Hofy, and his staff. They made no mention of the break-in, but proceded to inform Ali that his dorms contract was terminated, on the feeble grounds that a shisha pipe was found in the room and his walls had posters on it - admittedly an infringement of dorms regulations, but a fairly light and common one. We feel certain that the motive for the extraordinarily harsh response is purely political.  

Ali needs to evict the room by Wednesday, November 11. The date for the hearing had not yet been set. 

We ask all the recipients of this urgent call to do the following: 

  • Sign our petition to the Dean of Students and President of the University
  • Write a personal e-mail to either of the two, or to Mr. Peres (addresses are on our blog )
  • Visit our blog with the latest updates on the struggle (you can also sign up for updates with RSS)

Please spread the word, sign up, and write back with any ideas for support - this is as immediate and urgent as it gets. If you wish to receive regular updates, e-mail us on free.speech. huji@gmail. com


The campaign crew

http://freespeech20 08.wordpress. com


Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski [at]


"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs


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