Montreal, Quebec January 28 2013 – After heated debate and informed discussion the General Assembly of the Concordia Graduate Students’ Association (GSA) voted overwhelmingly in favour of a resolution to endorse, promote, and participate in the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against the state of Israel. Graduate students at the assembly considered arguments for and against ratifying the elected GSA Council of Directors’ December 2012 decision to participate in the growing global movement to pressure the State of Israel to recognize the sovereignty of the Palestinian people.
The resolution read as follows: “Be it resolved that the GSA General Assembly ratify the GSA Council of Directors’ decision and endorse the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against the State of Israel until it respects international law and ends its apartheid system.” In response to the membership’s desire for more discussion and information about BDS and how Concordia can participate, the GSA will establish a permanent committee to educate students and mobilize support for the campaign on- and off-campus.
An information campaign, including a discussion panel with academics, authors and students who have conducted intensive work and research in the area of BDS, Israeli apartheid and the complicity of the Canadian government, preceded the General Assembly vote. The General Assembly’s ratification formalizes the GSA’s support of Palestinian rights and opposition to Israel’s illegal occupation and violations of international law under the Geneva Conventions and United Nations resolutions. The GSA joins associations at the University of Toronto, York University, University of Regina, Carleton University and universities around the world that have all passed similar resolutions.
More about BDS:
In 2005, inspired by the previous BDS movement in solidarity with South Africans against Apartheid, more than 170 Palestinian civil society organizations called for international non-violent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against the State of Israel until it complies with international law. Since then, people from across the globe in solidarity with Palestine have been building BDS campaigns as a response to the initial brave call and as a way to put pressure on the State of Israel until the rights of Palestinians are met. More information can be found at http://www.bdsmovement.net/.
More about the Concordia Graduate Students’ Association (http://gsaconcordia.ca):
Established in 1970, the Concordia Graduate Students’ Association (GSA) represents over 6,000 graduate students at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The GSA is committed to defending the interests of its members at the local, provincial, and national level through a variety of campaigns and participation on University governance bodies. The GSA firmly supports the right to accessible education through active participation in education and mobilization campaigns, and seeks to increase graduate students’ influence on decision-making bodies and encourage involvement of its members in political processes, both internal and external to the University.
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