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  • Scientific boycott of Israel 'violates human rights'


A boycott on scientific cooperation with Israel in protest at the Israeli government's recent military actions would be "misguided and inevitably counterproductive", according to the International Human Rights Network of Academies and Scholarly Societies.

In a statement sent to 60 national academies and published in the 13 June issue of Nature, members of the network, which was created to address grave issues of science and human rights worldwide, urge researchers to support scientific exchange, regardless of nationality or politics.

Rather than influencing Israeli policy-makers, a boycott would "seriously and unfairly harm our scientific colleagues in Israel — many of whom have actively promoted peace through collegial engagement and open communication among academic centers in the region," the statement says.

The statement was issued on 28 April in response to a petition in Nature urging a European boycott of research and cultural links with Israel until the Israeli government "abides by UN resolutions and opens serious peace negotiations with the Palestinians".

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Link to statement by the International Human Rights Network of Academies and Scholarly Societies

Link to letter in Nature: Collaboration can work if inequality is recognised

Link to letter in Nature: Scientific links support an unjust peace process

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