NUS President claims she received death threats amid ongoing investigation into her conduct

One email, allegedly sent to Dallali reads: ‘We will find you and kill you’

TW: Discussion of racism, Islamophobia, sexual violence, death threats aimed at the NUS President

The President of the National Union of Students (NUS) has claimed she received death threats as well as racist abuse, amid an ongoing investigation into her own conduct.

Shaima Dallali is currently being investigated over antisemitism claims and was recently suspended as President of the NUS.

But during this investigation, Dallali says she has received a load of online abuse.

In a tweet, Dallali wrote: “I always knew it would be difficult being a Black, Muslim woman in the public eye but the racist and Islamophobic abuse I have been subjected to and death threats I have received since becoming NUS president are not ok.”

One email, allegedly sent to Dallali, reads: “I will kill you in the name of Israel and all Israelis you fuckin terrorist.”

Another reads: “I hope you die a painful death with a pig up your vagina you fucking Arab sandbag. We will find you and kill you.”

Reflecting on the horrific abuse, Dallali said: “I came into this role with so much hope and enthusiasm to build on the amazing work of the student movement and to serve students across the UK. Instead, I’ve been subjected to the most horrifying attacks on my character, my faith and my identity.”

“No doubt, these attacks have taken a toll on my mental and physical health. But what keeps me going is the thousands of incredible students who elected me with an overwhelming majority. I was elected by them with the promise of serving them and that I would never give up on them.

“There are those who are working tirelessly to make sure that women who look like me never feel welcomed or safe in public positions. I’m also working hard to make sure that no Black, Muslim women who assume this role in the future has to ever experience what I’ve experienced.

“I am proud to be Black. I’m proud to be Muslim and I’m proud to be serving students across the country who are facing some of the most difficult challenges that students have ever had to face.”

Why is NUS President Shaima Dallali being investigated?

Shaima Dallali has been subject to claims of antisemitism largely focussed on a tweet she wrote ten years ago that referenced a massacre of Jewish people.

Last month, the Union of Jewish (UJS) accused Dallali of “attacking the Jewish community,” while a group of former NUS presidents wrote a letter calling on the union to investigate the claims.

The government announced it was going to cut all ties with NUS, because of an “antisemitic rot at its heart”.

An independent investigation was launched by the NUS, and welcomed by Dallali, who has also apologised for the historical tweet.

At the time, Dallali told The Tab: “My hands are outstretched to all students that work in our movement, including Jewish students, and I have already expressed my willingness to arrange a meeting once I take office.”

She added: “The pre-emptive scrutiny of Muslim women is symptomatic of the nature of Gendered Islamophobia. Individuals and groups will go out of their way to seek to criminalise Muslim women in leadership, without acceptance for any space for growth and change.”

Shaima Dallali was due to take up her post in July but has been suspended by the NUS, awaiting an outcome of the independent inquiry.

University Palestinian societies are expressing their support for Dallali



Palestinian societies at LSE, King’s College London, Manchester Uni and Liverpool Uni are all coming out in support of Dallali.

Students at those unis, and others, are sharing an Instagram post that reads: “Since her election, Dallali has been targeted for her advocacy of Palestinian rights; she has been abused online with death threats, anti-Black and Islamophobic remarks.

“As students we reject this concerted attempt to remove and delegitimise a black, Muslim woman from a position of leadership within the student movement.”

A charity that fights antisemitism has applauded the suspension of Dallali

A spokesperson for the Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “While the details of this unprecedented reported suspension of Shaima Dallali are not yet clear, it may be a very promising first step by NUS as the investigation by Rebecca Tuck QC, to which we have contributed, progresses.

“We hope that this suspension represents the first acknowledgement by NUS of how dreadful its relations with Jewish students have become, and augurs real change at the union, but it is too early to tell. We will continue to ensure that NUS is held to account for its record and is supported if it shows, for the first time, a real good faith effort to reform.”

A spokesperson for the NUS said: “We cannot comment at this time as we are in the middle of an independent QC-led investigation into allegations of antisemitism. But as we have said before, we are prepared to take any and all actions recommended by Rebecca Tuck QC’s investigation.”

Related stories recommended by this writer:

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• National Union of Students to be investigated over antisemitism claims

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• Jewish students slam incoming NUS president for ‘attacking the Jewish community’