NEW YORK (JTA) — Brooklyn College launched a probe into allegations that Jewish students were wrongly ejected from an event hosted by the school in support of the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.
Karen Gould, the college’s president, on Wednesday ordered officials to conduct a "thorough independent review" of allegations that four members of the Jewish student group Hillel were told to leave the gathering organized by a pro-Palestinian group on campus last week. The college’s political science faculty was an official co-sponsor of the event.
The students claim they were escorted by security out of the room where a lecture by pro-Palestinian speakers was set to take place for no apparent reason other than being supporters of Israel.
The Hillel students had pro-Israel leaflets with them in the lecture hall. They told the New York Daily News that they were asked by an event organizer to give up the leaflets, and when they refused they were told to leave.
"If we learn that these students were denied that opportunity without cause, as they allege, the decision to have them removed will have been inappropriate and the college will issue a formal apology," Gould wrote in a statement.
The primary host of the event was the Brooklyn College Students for Justice in Palestine, a group that says it is aimed at “helping end Israeli apartheid and the illegal occupation of Palestine.” Some objected that a BDS event was being held on a college campus with the college’s imprimatur.