Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at the University of Tennessee is dedicated to raising awareness about the injustices concerning the occupation of the Palestinian people. We advocate for democratic and nonviolent principles to promote justice, human rights, equality, liberty, and self-determination for the Palestinian people. We work in solidarity with, not on behalf of, the Palestinians. SJP at the University of Tennessee emphasizes that it is not our right to say what the solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is. We work to amplify voices against injustice, and to see a future in Palestine founded on collaboration, equality, and diversity. To achieve this, we hold memorials and demonstrations as well as several educational and cultural events, talks, and film screenings.
As an advocacy group, SJP at the University of Tennessee is committed to a core set of principles to which it expects its members to adhere. While we believe that the Palestinian people must ultimately be able to decide their future in Palestine, certain key principles grounded in international law, human rights law, and basic standards of justice are fundamental to a just resolution for the Israel-Palestine issue. These principles include the full decolonization of all illegally held Palestinian lands, the repatriation of Palestinian refugees in accordance with the Right of Return, an end to all discriminatory laws and systems targeting the indigenous Palestinian population, and a total end to the occupation of Palestine.
Just as SJP condemns the racism and discrimination underlying many of the policies of the state of Israel, SJP also categorically opposes any form of prejudice or discrimination based on race, religion, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation. At the same time, SJP manifestly rejects attempts to equate principled criticism of Zionism, or of the character or policies of Israel, with anti-Semitism. Furthermore, SJP condemns all acts of unlawful violence, or violence that indiscriminately targets civilians or civilian infrastructure, committed by either side in the course of the conflict.
Ultimately, SJP’s strength flows from the diversity of its membership, comprising individuals of varied racial and ethnic backgrounds and political orientations, all united under these stated principles in the struggle for peace and justice in Palestine.