Former Hallam lecturer suspended for praising terrorists is raising money to sue the uni
Shahd Abusalama claims she was ‘hounded out’ for being Palestinian
A former Sheffield Hallam University lecturer, who says she was forced out of her job, is raising money to sue the institution.
Media studies specialist Shahd Abusalama is claiming the university breached her employment rights after suspending her and launching an investigation into allegations of antisemitism.
The investigation began after a series of comments by Abusalama, including her public backing of Leila Khaled, who was involved in the 1969 hijacking of TWA flight 840 and the attempted takeover of El Al flight 219 the following year.
According to The Jewish Chronicle, Abusalama praised Khaled as “a symbol of the Palestinian revolution in her glory”. She also described a Palestinian jailed for transporting suicide bombers as “legendary”.
Abusalama, however, claims that she was “hounded out” for being a Palestinian.
She left her job at the end of last year, despite the inquiry being dropped by the university and an offer of an improved employment contract.
In response to the investigation, Abusalama, who was born in Gaza, said: “I’m fighting so hard […] to clear myself of these unfounded accusations of antisemitism that were mounted against a Palestinian.”
Adding that the investigation was “a very convenient political way the Zionists are deliberately and systematically using to silence Palestinian voices and every voice that speaks out against Israeli injustice and systematic domination of the Palestinians”, she claims to have raised £13,000 to fund her case against Sheffield Hallam University.
In a YouTube video, the academic said: “The investigation was incredibly racist and incredibly retraumatising to me… I was later cleared, but the university had shown that I was not welcome, and I agreed to leave.”
A recent report by CST, a charity supporting the UK’s Jewish community, highlights that Abusalama’s claims that the complaints were a product of a Zionist conspiracy were without evidence.
The charity said her comments “echoed a familiar trope that assumes Jewish people who complain about antisemitism are doing so dishonestly and in bad faith”.
The Tab Sheffield contacted both Dr Abusalama and Sheffield Hallam University for comment.
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Featured image via @shahdismailpaint on Instagram.