Right to Education Campaign at Hurryyat conference highlights Israeli visa restrictions on international academics

Birzeit University’s Right to Education Campaign participated in the Right to Movement and Travel Conference on May 30, 2022, organized by the Hurryyat Center for Defense of Liberties and Civil Rights that aimed to highlight the systemic Israeli policies that prevent international academics, scholars and students from staying in the West Bank.

The conference, part of the United Nations Development Programme, gathered local and international experts, activists and legalists, to critically review the ongoing restrictions on the right to freedom of movement in Palestine and its impact of a wide range of other human rights.

Carmen Kishek, coordinator of the Right to Education Campaign, talked about Israel’s attempts to constrict Birzeit University’s fundamental right to education and undermine its academic freedom through escalating measures that give the Israeli military immense powers to isolate Palestinian universities from the rest of the world.

Kishek alluded to the most recent directive, titled “the Procedure for Entry and Residency of Foreigners in the Judea and Samaria Region,” which grants the Israeli military the absolute power to select which faculty, scholars and students may be present at Palestinian universities based on arbitrary criteria. She pointed out that this attack on the right to education is not new, and is part of the ongoing assaults on Palestinian higher educational institutions and the larger multilayered system of apartheid.