Students DEMAND CUSU disaffiliate from NUS following controversial election

“A horrifying message to Jewish students in the UK”

anti-semitism Cambridge CUSU Malia Bouattia National Union of Students NUS

Following the election of Malia Bouattia as President of the NUS despite allegations of anti-Semitism, Cambridge are calling for the disaffiliation of CUSU from the NUS. 

In recent weeks, the frontrunner for the presidency of the National Union of Students came under attack for alleged anti-Semitism, where the Birmingham JSoc President Daniel Clemens drew attention to her past remarks.

Her campaign attracted controversy, her presidency may attract even more

Her campaign attracted controversy, her presidency may attract even more

Included in these accusations were claims that Bouattia had described Birmingham University as a ‘zionist outpost’ and declaring that the government’s anti-terror Prevent strategy was the ‘result of the Zionist lobby’.

An open letter was signed by presidents of over 57 Jewish Societies across the country including representatives from Cambridge demanding she addressed these pressing concerns. Nonethelessss, despite this action she has since been elected President of the National Union of Students today.

Birmingham University, a 'zionist outpost'

Birmingham University was described as a Zionist outpost by Bouattia

In a statement upon her victory, Bouattia, who is the first black Muslim woman NUS President said ‘From cuts to maintenance grants, college closures, the black attainment gap and the Prevent agenda, the number of voices and groups being silenced by this government grows by day.’

However, there have since been calls from students within Cambridge for CUSU to disaffiliate from the NUS in light of these elections and the anti-Semitic behaviour the leader has demonstrated.

Cries to disaffiliate - but will CUSU listen?

Cries to disaffiliate – but will CUSU listen?

The leader of the Cambridge Campaign, Jack May, released the following statement:

‘The election of Malia as NUS President is a horrifying message to Jewish students in the UK. Attention has been repeatedly drawn to her anti-Semitic comments. Unfortunately, Malia’s election is just the latest event in a tide of anti-Semitism sweeping UK universities. Cambridge students should be given a chance to decide whether or not to remain part of the increasingly toxic culture and management of the NUS. Our students’ union should represent what we want, and not act as a mouthpiece for the extreme views of anti-Semitic individuals.’

Supporter of the Campaign and a Jewish student at Cambridge Adam Crafton added;

‘The failure of the national body means that the responsibility now falls upon our own Cambridge representatives. We call upon CUSU Council to recognise this shift in the political landscape and sense the need to offer students the freedom to choose who should represent their interests. As such, we implore CUSU Council to pass this motion, engage in a democratic process and ensure the freedom and security of Jewish students.’

Between calling for the abolishment of gay men’s reps and trying to ban Yik Yak, could this be what finally makes CUSU ditch the NUS?