LSE Student Occupation Ends In Historic Victory

The LSE Student Occupation has ended, with the capitulation of the University:

—–Original Message—–
From: LSEmail
Sent: Thu 1/22/2009 1:51 PM
Subject: Occupation ends

Statement from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

22 January 2009

Resolution of the Old Theatre occupation

We, the ‘Occupation Group’ and the School, are pleased to announce that the occupation of the Old Theatre in protest against Israeli action in Gaza, and to demand greater School support for Palestinian students ended at 20.30 on 21 January, by mutual consent.

The School’s Director, Howard Davies, has said of the crisis in Gaza: “I well understand the concerns felt by many students about the events in Gaza. It is painful to observe the suffering of the civilian population. Like Professor Trainor of Universities UK, who speaks for the sector as a whole, I supported calls for an end to the conflict. As he has said, many of the casualties have occurred in educational establishments. Wherever in the world scholars or their institutions are threatened, or their lives are disrupted by conflict, I believe all parties should respect the integrity of scholarship and intellectual and academic freedom and should work to minimise suffering”.

During the occupation several letters were exchanged (see weblinks below) and meetings held between the students and the School’s administration.  Agreement on the following issues raised by students was reached.

Ethical investment/divestment
*       The School’s Council had asked a working party looking into socially responsible investment strategies to consider the aspect of ‘engagement’. The working party is content to receive proposals from the student body concerning divestment from companies implicated in the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories.
*       Students’ concern about the School’s investment policy will be reported to Council and a paper by students on ethical investment policy will also be presented.

Scholarships for Palestinian students
*       Application fees will be waived for those in Gaza and the West Bank directly affected by the conflict.
*       A Palestinian Territories country page on the LSE website will detail all relevant scholarships and advertise pre-departure events for offer-holders.
*       Fund raising and recruitment strategy will be developed by the Financial Support Office, the Office of Development and Alumni Relations and the Students Union Palestine Society.

Support for Palestinian Universities
*       The LSE will work with the students to exploit the disposal of books and computers either by School-funded direct shipping or through recycling companies that support charitable aims whichever is most beneficial.

Humanitarian assistance
*       A high impact and widely publicised fundraising day in support of Medical Aid for Palestinians will be held, jointly sponsored by the Students Union and the School.

A more detailed statement of these agreements covering practical implementation will be taken forward early next week and made public.


Medical Aid for Palestinians

Expect more occupations, expect more capitulations