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Palestinian College Chief Resigns After Hamas Rally on West Bank Campus

Sari Nusseibeh, the president of the Palestinian Al-Quds University, resigned three days after a rally in support of Hamas at its eastern Jerusalem campus.

Nusseibeh will step down at the end of the academic year, according to an announcement on the university’s website. The announcement said that Nusseibeh announced his decision on Wednesday at a meeting of the university’s board of trustees, since he has reached the retirement age of 65. He has served as president of the university for the past 20 years and will remain with its philosophy department.

During Sunday’s two-hour rally involving hundreds of students, masked protesters marched through the campus wearing black ski masks and carrying replicas of rockets, according to photos posted on the website of independent journalist Tom Gross and on the Facebook page of the Islamic Bloc of Al-Quds University student group, which is associated with Hamas.

A rally in support of Islamic Jihad on the Al-Quds campus in November led to the suspension of ties between Al-Quds University and Brandeis University.

In announcing the suspension of the relationship, Brandeis President Frederick Lawrence said Nusseibeh’s condemnation of the demonstration — Nusseibeh said “Jewish extremists” were using the demonstration to “capitalize on events in ways that misrepresent the university as promoting inhumane, anti-Semitic, fascist and Nazi ideologies” — was “unacceptable and inflammatory.”

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