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Hundreds of faculty members at Harvard sign letter in support of president Gay

BOSTON — Hundreds of Harvard University faculty members signed a letter Sunday urging the school’s administration to resist calls to remove president Claudine Gay.

In a letter circulating Sunday, more than 550 faculty members urge the administration to ‘defend the independence of the university,’ following her controversial testimony on Capitol Hill about antisemitism on campus last week.

President Gay has faced widespread criticism, alongside the presidents of the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, after she was unable to say that calls for the genocide of Jewish people would violate the school’s conduct policy.

Gay later apologized, saying she failed to properly denounce threats of violence against Jewish students.

The Harvard faculty letter, addressed to the president and fellows of Harvard College, argues that external political calls to remove Gay are “at odds with Harvard’s commitment to academic freedom” and calls on administrators to “defend the independence of the university.”

“The critical work of defending a culture of free inquiry in our diverse community cannot proceed if we let its shape be dictated by outside forces,” continues the letter.

The letter was signed by faculty from across the university’s departments and graduate schools.

This comes after University of Pennsylvania President Liz Magill announced her resignation on Saturday following that congressional hearing.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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