Jewish students and faculty at Manchester University in Great Britain are demanding that the institution remove books by the Holocaust denier David Irving from its library — a request that the college has denied on free speech grounds.
“Leaving Irving’s books on open display is a threat to the safety of Jewish students and staff at a time when anti-Semitic hate crime is on the rise across Europe,” read a petition, now signed by 3,000 people, started by North West Friends of Israel.
Added Dr. Irene Lancaster, a lecturer in Jewish history at the university: “The signatories at least understand the pain that Manchester University is causing the Holocaust survivors and their families who live in the city.”
Several universities in Britain, at the request of Jewish groups, have put disclaimers inside his books or moved them to restricted areas of the library.
Irving came to prominence when he unsuccessfully sued American historian Deborah Lipstadt for libel over charge that he was a Holocaust denier.