A statement from Board of Trustees Chairperson Hanna Nasir

Chairperson of Birzeit University’s Board of Trustees Dr. Hanna Nasir has issued a statement to members of the Board of Trustees regarding the grave violation of Birzeit University’s campus on March 7, 2018, when Israeli forces kidnapped Omar Kisswani at gunpoint. The full text of the statement follows:

Dear members of the Board of Trustees,

An undercover Israeli force infiltrated the university’s campus Wednesday afternoon and kidnapped the head of the Student Council, Omar Kisswani, at gunpoint. An Israeli army unit was stationed near the university’s entrance in a vehicle with a Palestinian license plate. The unit, in full army uniform and gear, entered the university and covered the kidnapping operation, retreating with Kisswani after facing serious resistance from the university students.

Israeli forces have stormed Birzeit University’s campus many times before, but this is the first time an undercover unit infiltrated the university and kidnapped a student.

The university has condemned the kidnapping and will send press releases to all human rights and higher education organizations – including UNESCO and the International Association of Universities.

Such a despicable act will only make the university more strongly adhere to the principles of intellectual freedom and liberalism.  Our students enroll in the university based on their academic merits, and the university does not interfere in their political or intellectual opinions.  Birzeit University will always be a place where opinions of all backgrounds are respected. This is the university’s philosophy, which it will always uphold, regardless of any attempts of obstruction or oppression by the Israeli Occupation.  

The Board of Trustees stands hand in hand with the university’s community in condemning and denouncing this cowardly act by the wanton Israeli Occupation.

Best regards,

Hanna Nasir

Chairperson, Board of Trustees