RMIT Announces It Has No Partnerships With Israeli Weapons Maker Elbit Systems
The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) has announced that it no longer has any partnerships with Elbit Systems, Israel’s largest private weapons company, or Elbit Systems of Australia following a year-long campaign led by students and BDS Australia, together with Palestine solidarity activists and groups in Melbourne.
RMIT and Elbit System had announced two partnership projects, one in 2019 and another in 2022.
As the Palestinian Federation of Unions of University Professors and Employees (PFUUPE) said in its letter to RMIT, “Partnering with institutions or companies complicit in Israel’s apartheid regime contributes to prolonging Israel’s violent rule over Palestinians and comes with serious legal and moral concerns.” We are pleased to see that RMIT has taken those concerns seriously.
At a time when Israel has been carrying out a genocidal war against 2.3 million Palestinians in the occupied and besieged Gaza Strip for over a month, killing over 10,000 Palestinians, including more than 4,300 children, the announcement by RMIT ending its partnership with Elbit Systems is a welcome example of institutions ending complicity in Israel’s crimes against Palestinians.
We join BDS Australia in urging the Victorian government to end its partnership with Elbit Systems and call on activists around the world to continue building grassroots campaigns to end complicity in Israel’s military forces, military-security industry, and system of oppression. This includes direct aid, sale and purchase of arms, joint research and partnership projects.
Palestinians reiterate the demand for a comprehensive military embargo on Israel to hold it accountable for its genocide, apartheid and other crimes against humanity, just as was done in the case of apartheid South Africa.