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British union reconsidering Israel boycott

Britain’s University and College Union will reconsider supporting an academic boycott of Israel.

Organizations opposing a boycott of Israeli academic institutions and individual researchers in the United Kingdom said they will consult their legal advisers following Wednesday’s decision to reconsider the boycott resolution.

The motion, which will be discussed and voted on at the union’s annual conference next month, will be presented for the first time by the National Executive Committee – the union’s top executive body.

Last year the union adopted a pro-boycott motion proposed by several members of the executive committee, but withdrew the resolution after its legal advisers noted the illegality of a nationality-based boycott.

Speaking for the Stop the Boycott campaign, Jeremy Newmark, the head of the Jewish Leadership Council, said the anti-boycott organizations are now seeking legal advice in order to “empower regular UCU members in their attempt to force the union to abandon this destructive course of action.”

“This is something that many UCU members have asked us to do,” he said.

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