Statement on forced exmatriculation

On February 21, the Referent*innenrat (AStA) of Humboldt University published a statement, which you can find here: 

We fully endorse this statement and firmly reject the reintroduction of the law of order and the possibility of forced exmatriculation by the universities. We also do not see this as a suitable measure to protect students, but rather as a repressive attempt to discipline student bodies in an authoritarian manner. As the RefRat writes: "However, making political expressions of opinion the subject of repressive and regulatory measures and defaming them across the board is an authoritarian step backwards that will not make universities a safer or more non-discriminatory place.

In the following, we would like to add a few paragraphs to the RefRat's justification that address the specific situation at the FU.

1. forced exmatriculation: repression only against students

Various cases [FN1] show that right-wing, anti-Semitic, racist and conspiracy theory content has been tolerated at the FU for years. For example, the former chairman of the Junge Alternative was employed as a tutor in the math department for a long time [FN1].The student council initiative of the Otto Suhr Institute has long criticized the employment of a conspiracy-theoretical private lecturer, where anti-Semitism is on the agenda in courses [FN2]. In 2022, despite fierce student protest, a lecturer was allowed to habilitate at the biology department who linked videos from the far-right and anti-Semitic Identitarian movement on his teaching homepage and also disseminated sexist and racist content in his courses [FN2]. Student groups at other faculties also regularly report sexist, queer-hostile and racist statements in courses and on campus in general. At best, the women's and equal opportunities officers react by "documenting" the cases - however, the university fails to react in each individual case beyond simply keeping a tally. Forced exmatriculation cannot be used against right-wing staff or lecturers; this measure would only affect students.

 As such, it is not suitable as a strategy against anti-Semitism, racism and other ideologies of inequality. In the cases we have denounced, the university has so far remained inactive.

2. forced exmatriculation does not protect.

Forced de-registration is a politically motivated measure, because in the specific case of a violent person, forced de-registration does not protect the perpetrator from violence.The university as such is a public space.Every person has access, regardless of whether they are enrolled or not. The only option is a three-month ban from the premises, which the university can impose in cases of violence.In contrast to forced exmatriculation, such a ban largely prevents the perpetrator from being on campus. This can prevent further violence in individual cases.

3. instead: Prevention, education and consistent processing!

We call on the University Executive Board to continue to speak out against forced exmatriculation. There are other ways and means to combat anti-Semitism, racism and right-wing ideologies in the short and long term.

Prevention: We call on the university to take violence and discrimination of all kinds seriously and to provide suitable contact points. In addition to women's representatives and a central diversity office, specific representatives are needed. The newly introduced anti-Semitism officer is a (late) first step, but there also needs to be officers for racism and queer hostility, for example. Students who fear violence and discrimination must be able to turn to the responsible persons. To this end, the powers of the respective officers must also be expanded so that diversity work does not only consist of case documentation and the drafting of non-binding guidelines.

Education: For some time now, the university has been using phrases to anchor awareness of "gender and diversity issues" as a final objective in study regulations, but there is usually a lack of substantive steps towards this [FN3].Professorships that deal with gender and diversity regularly come under attack.Last year, a professorship in the field of gender studies was abolished at the Department of Law [FN4]; this year, the student council initiative of the Department of Physics is fighting to retain another gender professorship [FN5].At the Otto Suhr Institute, the student council initiative has been calling for the establishment of an "Ideologies of Inequality" working area for years, where education on anti-Semitism and racism, among other things, should take place.

Lecturers should also receive appropriate further training. The Berlin State Anti-Discrimination Act also provides for mandatory participation in further training in the area of diversity and anti-discrimination for employees with supervisory and management functions [FN6]. We call on the university to live up to its responsibility and educational mandate.

Consistent reappraisal: One of the longest-standing demands of the student body is for consistent reappraisal, both in the cases already mentioned and in future cases of discrimination and violence. We also repeat: The Henry-Ford-Bau, named after the eponymous grandson of the anti-Semite and pen pal of Hitler Henry Ford, who financed the National Socialist war of extermination and profited directly from it [FN7], MUST be renamed. This naming is just one example of many where the present and past of the campus needs to be addressed, as we have been constantly calling for for many years.


We agree with the statement of the HU RefRat. The university must not give in to populist demands. Instead of repression, there should be prevention, education and consistent reappraisal of anti-Semitism, racism and other forms of discriminatory violence.

Asta FU



FN3: bspw. Physik M.Sc.: "§2 Studienziele. Die Absolventinnen und Absolventen [...] haben ein modernes Gender- und Diversitätsverständnis [...] erlangt." (

FN4: Petition der Kritischen Jurist*innen

FN5: Offener Brief

FN6: Berliner Landesantidiskriminierungsgesetz §11, Abs. 4 (