UCLA Palestine tents

Solidarity Statement from the Gaza Freedom Flotilla Coalition with University Students and Staff

The Gaza Freedom Flotilla Coalition strongly supports the students and staff of universities across the world who are courageously advocating for an end to their universities’ and their governments’ complicity with Israel’s genocide in Palestine.

The situation in Gaza is a human-made humanitarian crisis of immense proportions. For decades, Palestinians in Gaza have endured the devastating impacts of Israel’s unlawful blockade that has deprived them of their basic rights and necessities. Over the past seven months, the suffering has intensified as Israel’s control shifted from blockade to bombing, sniping, starvation and apocalyptic-level destruction. The toll of Israel’s barbaric aggression has been catastrophic: more than 35,000 Palestinians killed, almost half of whom are children, over 76,000 injured, more than two million forced to flee their homes, and hundreds of thousands suffering from hunger, dehydration, poverty, preventable diseases and lack of access to essential services, including medical care.

We commend the efforts of students at more than 130 college campuses across the United States and at tens of other universities across the world who are leading a non-violent revolt against the complicity of their institutions in Israel’s apartheid and genocide of the Palestinian people. Instead of listening to students’ urgent pleas, most universities are shamefully repressing, brutalizing, arresting, and suspending students for using their voices to take a stand for freedom and justice. Such reactions from university administrators and the corresponding violence from law enforcement expose the hypocrisy and double standards in our society whereby those who stand for equality and human rights are vilified, attacked, and jailed, while those supporting apartheid and genocide are not.

The targeted repression of Palestinian students and their allies, including the unjust suspension of members of organizations such as Students for Justice in Palestine and Jewish Voice for Peace, is a grave injustice that must be rectified. We call on all universities to grant complete amnesty from both legal claims and academic discipline for all participants in these demonstrations. Additionally, we demand the reversal of suspensions, firings and evictions imposed without due process on students and workers on campuses.

As we prepare to sail to Gaza with urgently needed humanitarian aid, our Coalition stands firmly in support of the demands of the students, including divestment from corporations that profit from Israeli apartheid, genocide, and occupation in Palestine. We echo the call for swift action to meet their demands.

Throughout history, students have been at the forefront of movements for liberation and social change. They act to create the world that leaders only talk about. History will validate the brave, principled actions of today’s students, and put to shame the forces that conspired to repress and silence them.


For media inquiries, see the Freedom Flotilla media contacts nearest to you.


About the Gaza Freedom Flotilla Coalition: The Gaza Freedom Flotilla Coalition is a global coalition that has been sailing since 2010 to confront and physically challenge Israel’s illegal and inhumane blockade of Gaza. In the coming weeks we will sail a Flotilla of ships carrying over 5000 tons of humanitarian aid and hundreds of civilian participants from 40 countries, demanding an end to the siege and access for aid to the Palestinian people of Gaza.