The Union's National Executive council (NEC) refused to pass a motion criticising the terror group, which has enslaved women and displaced or killed tens of thousands of people, in its most recent meeting. It comes shortly after the NEC passed a motion to boycott Israel entirely, despite warnings it could alienate Jewish students.
A spokesperson for the NUS said in a statement:
At our most recent NEC meeting, a motion on this issue was presented and voted on by all members. Some committee members felt that the wording of the motion being presented would unfairly demonise all Muslims rather than solely the group of people it set out to rightfully condemn.
According to student newspaper the Tab, the wording was as follows:
Iraqi/Kurdish solidarity Proposed: Daniel Cooper Seconded: Shreya Paudel, Clifford Fleming
NUS National Executive Committee notes:
The ongoing humanitarian crisis and sectarian polarisation in Iraq - which has resulted in thousands of Yazidi Kurds being massacred. NUS NEC believes
That the people of Iraq have suffered for years under the sectarian and brutally repressive dictatorship of Saddam Hussein, the US/UK invasion and occupation, the current sectarian regime linked to both the US and Iran, and now the barbaric repression of the “Islamic State” organisation.
That rape and other forms of sexual violence are being used as weapons against women in IS-occupied areas, while minorities are being ethnically cleansed.
NUS NEC resolves:
To work with the International Students’ Campaign to support Iraqi, Syrian and other international students in the UK affected by this situation.
To campaign in solidarity with the Iraqi people and in particular support the hard-pressed student, workers’ and women’s organisations against all the competing nationalist and religious-right forces.
To support Iraqis trying to bridge the Sunni-Shia divide to fight for equality and democracy, including defence of the rights of the Christian and Yazidi-Kurd minorities.
To condemn the IS and support the Kurdish forces fighting against it, while expressing no confidence or trust in the US military intervention.
Encourage students to boycott anyone found to be funding the IS or supplying them with goods, training, travel or soldiers.
To make contact with Iraqi and Kurdish organisations, in Iraq and in the UK, in order to build solidarity and to support refugees.
To issue a statement on the above basis.
An NUS source clarified that these things could get very "political". A spokesperson said the group plans to pass a motion against Isis, which is as yet unwritten, at the next NEC meeting in November.