Universities split on adoption of antisemitism definition

Australian universities are split on whether to adopt a controversial definition of antisemitism following a push from parliamentary MPs that has been criticised as an “outright attack on academic freedom”, writes Caitlin Cassidy for The Guardian Australia.

On 25 January the University of Melbourne became the first institution to publicly announce it would adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism as part of its broader “anti-racism commitment”, leading to backlash from the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network who said it had been denied repeated requests for consultation.

But the president of the National Tertiary Education Union Sydney branch, Nick Riemer, said the Parliamentary Friends of the IHRA had launched an “outright attack on academic freedom”. “[The IHRA] will prevent universities doing what they’re meant to do … critically analyse the contemporary world without concern for lobbies,” he said. “A powerful political lobby is trying to stifle the course of free debate in universities.”
Full report on The Guardian Australia site