Maryam Namazie. Photo: Peter / Flickr

Warwick SU overturns decision on Maryam Namazie

Maryam Namazie will be allowed to speak to Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists (WASH) after Warwick Students’ Union (SU) overturned its decision to ban the speaker.

Ms Namazie will now be allowed to speak to the¬†Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists, following a recent uproar against the SU’s decision to ban her from speaking to the society.

According to WASH, the SU originally stated that Ms Namazie would not be able to speak to the society, which led to the society appealing this decision.

The Society has stated that they waited over two weeks without hearing a decision on the appeal.

However, following the recent coverage of the ban in the national press and involvement from high profile individuals such as Richard Dawkins and Brian Cox, the SU has decided to reverse its decision and has permitted Ms Namazie to speak.

Isaac Leigh, President of the SU, issued a statement on Facebook, stating that the standard procedures had not been followed. He said: “This is a significant error for which there can be no excuse.”

Isaac added: “We also want to take this opportunity to apologise to everyone who has expressed concern, or disappointment, or who has been hurt by this significant error and, as we said above, we will be issuing a full and unequivocal apology to Maryam Namazie.”

However, students took to Facebook to voice concerns over the SU’s handling of the situation. Many questioned who denied the initial request and some called for the individual to stand down.

Some students also expressed concerns about Ms Namazie speaking and suggested that she was an Islamophobe. Some also called for Ms Namazie to speak on an open platform as part of a debate with speakers of different opinions.

Warwick ISOC have also released a statement, they said: “We are confident that the decision to allow this event to go ahead, despite its potentially inflammatory nature, will mean the same courtesy is extended to all societies on campus, and the important values of free speech upheld in all cases.”


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