Islamic Proselytizing at the University of Haifa
Islamic Proselytizing at the University of HaifaCourtesy

Students at the University of Haifa are furious after religious activists set up a stand in the middle of the campus that presents the teachings of Islam.

This is an exhibition of Islamic books operated by members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community based in the city of Haifa. Activists operated the stand last week for five days.

According to one of the students who spoke to Israel National News, the Islamic activists did not display their views and books in an innocent way, but chose to emphasize the parts of Islam that supposedly prove Judaism is wrong.

In the internal WhatsApp groups of students at the university, there was great anger over the fact that the university administration allowed this to happen.

"I have no problem with a stand that displays a different religion, but when signs start circulating around the university, and when books talk about 'where the Jews are wrong', this is not a display, it is preaching, and yet everything is well received by the university... I doubt they would be as accepting if there were a similar stand from the Jewish side," one of the students wrote to his friends.

Another student wrote: "The bottom line is that this is missionary work for all intents and purposes: Islamic clerics, the Koran translated to Hebrew, and translated books of the Ahmadis (even to Yiddish). It is inconceivable that a large academic institution in the State of Israel would open a missionary branch of any religious sect."

According to the same student, "It would have infuriated me just as much if there was a stand of a Christian mission, a different Muslim sect, or even of Jewish [proselytizing]. Signs like 'Islam saved Judaism,' in an academic institution where Jews study, is horrible in my opinion.

“Whoever claims that Jews proselytize (for example Chabad on campus) is wrong. I have never seen a sign in the university that tells Arabs to come and convert to Judaism."

Another student wrote: "I do not know if this is a passage from a certain book they published or a title, but in my opinion, there is a religious message here that did not come out ok at all; certainly not in a Jewish state and not in a state-run university. This is very problematic."

The University of Haifa responded to the report with a statement, saying: "The event in question was not a public relations event, and certainly not missionary activity in any way."

"This was a book exhibition which was intended to familiarize the university community with the beliefs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. The University of Haifa is proud to be the most pluralistic university in Israel, and a home to people of all the religions that make up Israeli society."

ספרי איסלאם מתורגמים ליידיש
ספרי איסלאם מתורגמים ליידישצילום: באדיבות המצלם