A person is holding up a sign in protest that reads "use our work, use our identity, but silent when we're killed"


On Mar. 4, University of Waterloo (UW) students interrupted the UW Senate meeting to demand the university sever ties with Technion, an Israeli Institue of Technology. They also demanded an official statement honouring the death of guest scholar Sofyan Taya and to condemn the genocide in Gaza.

The rally for Palestine began in the Arts Quadrant of the UW campus. Students, faculty and alumni gathered to call out UW’s silence and complicity with the genocide.

UWaterloo Voices for Palestine is a student-run club that celebrates Palestinian heritage and advocates for Palestinian liberation. The group, in collaboration with the University of Waterloo Coalition for Liberation, called for the severance of UW’s ties with Technion.

On the same day, demonstrators walked around the board room with QR codes that lead to a document recording UW’s relationship with Technion over the years and outlining Technion’s connections to the Israel Defense Forces, which the protestors referred to as the Israeli Occupation Force.

Many protestors gathered outside Ira Needles Hall and chanted their slogans that included “Free the People, Free the Land,” and “Vivek Goel your hands are red, more than 30,000 dead.”

“On Nov. 23, I had the misfortune of having a face-to-face meeting with Waterloo [and it was] horrible. We have a call. During this meeting, I was explicitly told that the university would not use the word genocide to describe Israel’s actions since it wasn’t their decision,” an anonymous speaker said.

One speaker noted that UW maintains its ties with Technion through an exchange program and funding to the school, thus being complicit with the genocide in Gaza. Technion’s research is used by the Israeli Defense Forces to develop weapons and surveillance technology used on Palestinians.

“Every university has been destroyed. Every holy site has been decimated, and every hospital is inoperable. Palestinians are still called terrorists, or potential terrorists or future terrorists to justify their murders,” the anonymous speaker said.

On Feb. 19, the University of Waterloo Coalition for Liberation posted their petition calling for the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA) to host a referendum where students vote to sever ties between UW and Technion. The results of the referendum would become WUSA’s official stance on the genocide in Gaza.