Brazilian University Cancels "Innovation Challenge" With Complicit Israeli University

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) welcomes the decision of the Federal University of Ceará (UFC) in Brazil to cancel the “Innovation Challenge Brazil – Israel” over Israel’s military assault that has killed more than 23,000 Palestinians in Gaza.

In a statement, UFC clarified that it stands “firmly against the war and is outraged by all the loss of human life and the destruction that have occurred.” 

Israel is currently carrying out what legal experts have defined as an unfolding genocide, using starvation and thirst as weapons.

Holding an “innovation challenge” with complicit Israeli institutions on topics such as food security and water and sanitation, would have been a grave affront to the 2.3 million Palestinians in Gaza struggling for their lives under Israel’s brutal bombing campaign and siege.

Initiatives such as these aimed at strengthening ties with complicit Israeli institutions are part of the close-an-eye culture of impunity that has allowed Israel to carry out the world’s first livestreamed genocide and maintain its apartheid rule oppressing Palestinians.

“Innovation Challenge” partner Ben Gurion University partners with Israel’s Ministry of Defense and Israeli weapons companies currently carrying out the genocidal war on Palestinians in Gaza, including Elbit Systems, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries.

In addition, the Israeli military is building a technology campus next to Ben Gurion University, aimed at furthering the ties between the military and BGU. A brigadier general at the ribbon cutting ceremony said it will “reinforce the army's operational capabilities.”

We thank UFC community members for campaigning to raise awareness, refusing business-as-usual with Israel’s genocidal regime, and successfully working to cancel this partnership.

We urge all universities, academic associations, faculty unions and student groups to work to cancel all ties with complicit Israeli institutions as a contribution to stopping Israel’s genocidal assault on Palestinians in Gaza and to dismantling its apartheid regime.


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