The Rights Forum does not want a half answer

 

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The Rights Forum maintains that Dutch universities must disclose correspondence with, among others, the Central Jewish Consultation and the National Coordinator of Antisemitism. The knowledge centre on the Palestinian-Israeli issue submitted a Freedom of Information Act (Wob) request to Dutch universities in January. Among other things, it wanted to obtain documentation on their links with organisations that ‘propagate support for the State of Israel’.

 

It led to controversy and accusations of anti-Semitism. In the end, the universities are only partially willing to comply with the request. They will provide insight into their institutional contacts with organisations in Israel - which the Forum also requested - but not into their ties with ‘Dutch and international organisations involved in religion, remembrance or combating anti-Semitism’.

 

Last week the answer of The Rights Forum came. It calls the universities’ decision ‘unacceptable’ and believes that they have succumbed to a ‘libel and slander campaign’ in which criticism of Israel is equated with anti-Semitism. The chance is now great that it will end up in court. The court will then have to determine whether the universities can invoke the grounds for exception in the Dutch Freedom of Information Act. (HOP, BB)