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University of Essex lecturer sacked after anti-Semitism row

Dr Maaruf Ali
Dr Maaruf Ali

A University of Essex lecturer who opposed the creation of a Jewish society has been fired.

Dr Maaruf Ali, a computer and electronics lecturer, was suspended earlier this year after he opposed the creation of a Jewish society on the grounds that “Zionists” were behind it.

The lecturer had also shared online material questioning the Holocaust.

He, however, denied being anti-Semitic or denying the Holocaust.

Ali said: “I am not against Jews, I don’t hate their religion, their people or their culture. I believe that everyone should be allowed to form any society. This is what I’m thinking now – which is what I didn’t think at the time.”

In a statement, the University of Essex said a member of staff had been dismissed following a tribunal hearing.

“The university has now completed an independent investigation into the serious allegations made against a member of university staff,” it added.

Welcoming Ali’s dismissal, Daniel Kosky, from the Union of Jewish Students, said: “It is wholly the correct decision for Dr Ali to be removed from his teaching post following severely antisemitic comments and engaging in Holocaust revisionism on social media.

“Those in positions of responsibility and influence must be held accountable for the environment that they create in lecture halls.

“We welcome this positive step in creating an inclusive campus environment, and we hope to see the University of Essex continue this work into the future.”