The Debate over an Academic Boycott of Israel–in Ireland


Writing for University World News, John Kelly reports on the debate over an academic boycott of Israeli universities that is now occurring in Ireland. Kelly notes that the issue has become prominent in Ireland considerably later than in most member nations of the European Union, 14 of which have governmentally endorsed the boycott. In Ireland, the issue has thus far been confined to whether academics and their professional associations would endorse the boycott.

Kelly is a professor emeritus and former registrar of University College Dublin, as well as chair of the Friends of Bethlehem University in Ireland, a non-profit supporting the only Roman Catholic university in the “Holy Land.” So, his interest in the issue is undoubtedly colored by his own direct interest in higher education in the region.

Kelly reports that the newly established Academics for Palestine forum in Ireland has gotten “many hundreds of signatures from…

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