Japanese physicist Shin-ichi Kurokawa of the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization in Tsukuba, Japan, has written to Sally Hunt, General Secretary of the British University and College Union (UCU) to express his opposition to the UCU’s proposed boycott, which, he states, “clearly violates” Statute 5 of the International Council of Science. Prof. Kurokawa’s letter follows below.
To: Ms. Sally Hunt June 28, 2007
General Secretary, University and College Union (UCU)
Dear Ms. Hunt,
I am a Japanese accelerator physicist. Recently, one of my best American friends informed me that the University and College Union was considering the boycott of Israeli academics.
I express my strong opposition as a scientist to this boycott. Such a boycott clearly violates Statute 5 of the International Council of Science (ICSU), which I show at the end of my message.
It is clearly written in the Statute that “the principle of the Universality of Science is fundamental to scientific progress” and that ICSU “opposes any discrimination on the the basis of such factors as ethnic origin, religion, citizenship, language, political stance, gender, sex or age.”
This kind of boycott will surely harm scientific progress and also hinder the creation of Peace in the Middle East.
I urge you as General Secretary of UCU to take any measures to prevent implementing the boycott that was endorsed by the UCU Congress on May 30.
High Energy Accelerator Research Organization
International Council of Science Statute 5: the Universality of Science
The principle of the Universality of Science is fundamental to scientific progress. This principle embodies freedom of movement, association, expression and communication for scientists as well as equitable access to data, information and research materials. In pursuing its objectives in respect of the rights and responsibilities of scientists, the International Council for Science (ICSU) actively upholds this principle, and, in so doing, opposes any discrimination on the basis of such factors as ethnic origin, religion, citizenship, language, political stance, gender, sex or age. ICSU shall not accept disruption of its own activities by statements or actions that intentionally or otherwise prevent the application of this principle.
Revised wording approved by the ICSU Executive Board, November, 2004