Michigan State trustees agree to review investments after students demand divestment from Israel

The Michigan State University Board of Trustees will review the school's financial investments after calls for divestment from Israel.

The Michigan State University Board of Trustees will take a look at the institution’s financial investments after demands from pro-Palestinain protesters to divest from Israel.

During a Jan. 2 board meeting, several individuals accused the trustees of being complacent with Israel’s so-called genocide, according to the State News.

Pro-Palestinan protesters disrupted the meeting and one individual was removed from the room by police.

Alissa Hakim, a student at Michigan State, told the trustees that, “You must take student demands into serious consideration and act.”

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“Your Arab and Muslim students cannot be continuously failed and rejected,” Hakim said.

Saba Saed, vice president of the Arab Cultural Society at the university, brought up the school’s previous divestment from South Africa during apartheid.

“To divest from apartheid once means you must continue to divest from apartheid, especially in times like this,” said Saed.

Purani Murukathas, another individual at the meeting, even accused the trustees of being “war criminals.

“I never imagined that I would ever come face to face with war criminals,” said Murukathas. “You boast values of diversity and inclusion and you claim to care about your marginalized students. However, you turn around and fund genocide whether it can fill your pockets. Your promises and values mean nothing.” 

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Following calls from protesters at the meeting, trustee Sandy Pierce told the audience that a review of the university’s financial portfolio would take place.

”Do it with students in the room,” an audience member shouted.

A spokesperson for the East Lansing, Michigan, university told the outlet that while the school owns U.S. treasury bonds issued to finance Israeli aid, “the university purchased these bonds in March 2023, well before the current conflict.”