Exeter student suspended from NUS elections for praising Netanyahu’s victory in Israel
He has since been reinstated as a candidate
The NUS has suspended an Exeter student after he praised Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his recent election victory.
Jack Morewood, a candidate for the position of Student Director, was speaking to the audience at the NUS panel. He was filmed saying: "Congrats to King Bibi, big mazel tov to him for his successful re-election in Israel."
The NUS suspended him after the comment drew complaints. It has now lifted the suspension.
@UniofExeter, don’t let your student, Jack Morewood, who’s running for public positions within your university and NUS, run. The comment congratulating a FAR FACIST LEADER is absolutely disgusting, and as you can hear, A LOT of upset was caused. Please take action against him. https://t.co/oMIZSNu7XP
— Katie Racklyee-haw? (@katie_racklyeft) April 10, 2019
This praise of the newly re-elected Prime Minister, who is known publicly as "Bibi," proved controversial, and was met with shouts of "Free Palestine!"
Video footage of Jack's remarks was shared on Twitter by a member of the audience, who called for the University to prevent him from running for further public positions.
She said: "Don’t let your student, Jack Morewood, who’s running for public positions within your university and NUS, run.
"The comment congratulating a FAR FACIST LEADER is absolutely disgusting, and as you can hear, A LOT of upset was caused. Please take action against him."
The NUS said they had "taken the decision to suspend the candidate in question until such a time as the DPC has made a decision regarding the breach of the code of conduct."
When the suspension was lifted, a spokesperson from the NUS said: "Following completion of that code of conduct investigation earlier today, Jack Morewood’s suspension was lifted and he is therefore a candidate in the elections taking place today."
When approached by The Jewish Chronicle for comment, Jack said he was "now unsuspended and [has] received a verbal warning," declining to comment further.
Jack appears to have previously mocked the "Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions" (BDS) movement against Israel in his past manifesto for the Students' Guild, of which he is a member.
In it, he said the Guild should "boycott a new country each day. An hour will be spent questioning that country's right to exist for baseless reasons, and after we've boycotted all countries, the Guild will declare independence."
Jack later told The Exeter Tab: "I regret making the comment on stage at Conference. For the record, I do not support or like Benjamin Netanyahu, and I don’t support or like the NUS either: People who try to make it better or challenge it, including the current president, are not welcomed in it.
"The NUS won’t change, and this Conference showed us this: Watering down vital reforms with amendment after amendment and bullying their own president off Conference floor.
"This whole thing highlights an undeniable double standard: You can shout free Palestine, call for the destruction of Israel, on an NUS stage making others feel uncomfortable and not only avoid suspension, but even end up being elected.
"However, congratulate a leader on winning a free and fair election and you’re met with complaints, suspension and then protest. The bottom line is, I regret the comment, but the NUS is a joke and that won’t be changing anytime soon."