25 March 2024

Statement from the Principal on the crisis in the Middle East

Principal's statement on crisis in the Middle East

Abertay campus

Statement on the crisis in the Middle East from Abertay University Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Liz Bacon

The Israel-Hamas war in the Middle East is a global humanitarian crisis with effects being felt across the world. As a University community, we’ve been appalled to witness the attacks by Hamas and the effects of Israel’s military action on citizens in Palestine, and our deepest sympathies are with all those currently suffering in the region and their families, friends and loved ones. We acknowledge the pain and loss of all those connected to these events and we call for a ceasefire and an immediate resolution to the conflict.  

While we have not received any direct reports of incidents of antisemitism or Islamophobia on campus, we are aware that the situation is highly concerning for many our students, staff and alumni, and also those across the city of Dundee more widely. At this time, more than ever, we call on all members of the Abertay community to stay true to the University’s values of respect, inclusion, dignity and kindness, accepting and valuing those who hold differences of background, belief, identity, nationality, and religion. 

At Abertay, we do not seek to limit lawful freedom of speech in any form, however we are clear that there is no place for antisemitism, Islamophobia, or any form of racism, discrimination or threatening behaviour. As a University with a diverse and international population, we recognise that our community will have differences of opinion about all matters, including the current conflict. Our commitment is to provide an inclusive, respectful, and supportive learning and working environment for all and we will continue to advocate that lawful opinions should be expressed safely, respectfully and without fear. 

Our dedicated online reporting tool, TellUs, is available for anyone who wishes to report unwanted behaviours, either experienced directly, witnessed as a bystander, or made in digital form. Reports can also be made in person via the Student Enquiry Zone in the Library or the Security desk in the Kydd Building. 

I’m confident that we will continue to embrace the friendly and collegiate community spirit that Abertay is renowned for during these troubled times and, as ever, my door is always open to anyone who wishes to discuss the current crisis or any other matters. 

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