Suspension of Medical Resident Yipeng Ge from U. of Ottawa

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2023-11-21-YG.jpgIn November 2023, Dr. Yipeng Ge was suspended[i] from his medical residency at the University of Ottawa for pro-Palestinian social media remarks critical of Israel, which a colleague unilaterally deemed antisemitic. This episode occurred in the context of an academic institution, exposing the difficulty of expressing support for Palestine in professional and academic settings. According to the University of Ottawa (UofO), Ge was suspended after the administration received complaints regarding a suspected breach of professional norms by a medical resident.

Why is this incident considered Anti-Palestinian Racism (APR)?

This episode is considered an example of anti-Palestine racism (APR) because Dr. Ge was disciplined for expressing solidarity with Palestinians and criticizing Israeli policy. This action against him highlights the larger issue of APR as defined[ii] by the Arab Canadian Lawyers Association (ACLA), in which advocating for Palestinian rights or criticizing Israeli government activities can result in charges of antisemitism, professional consequences, or both. According to the definition: “APR …silences … defames … excludes or pressures others to exclude Palestinian perspectives.” Palestinian perspectives and their allies are always under attack,

Additional Background to the Incident

Dr. Ge’s research[iii] focuses on indigenous health, anti-racism, and decolonization. Commenting on the ongoing bombing of civilians in Gaza by Israel, Ge posted on his social media criticizing Israel and described the situation as "apartheid upon Palestinian people" and "settler colonialism." The university's faculty of medicine postgraduate professionalism subcommittee that issued the suspension did so privately, and gave Dr. Ge no right to address the accusations against him. This action against Ge is typical of anti-Palestinian racism, where institutional and social measures are employed to suppress voices advocating for Palestinian rights. In an interview with The Breach, Dr. Ge explained[iv] how the concept of professionalism was being misused to silence pro-Palestine advocacy online. Accusing someone in the medical profession as a danger to patient safety is a grave, significant and severe concern, which is being institutionalized and weaponized to repress pro-Palestine voices.

Suspensions like Ge’s serve not only to penalize the individuals but also to deter others from expressing similar views, effectively policing discourse on the issue of Palestine. Professional suspension entails disciplinary acts and public vilification for expressing compassion and challenging myths about Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The retaliation against Ge, which included a suspension without apparent cause for unprofessional conduct, reflected an attempt to silence and punish him. As he later expressed, Dr. Ge felt voiceless after these destructive steps, and subsequently made the decision to resign[v] from the board of directors of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA). The labeling of Ge's advocacy as antisemitism by the UofO, particularly on issues like apartheid and colonialism, reflects efforts to delegitimize and silence pro-Palestinian discourse by framing it as inherently problematic, offensive, or antisemitic, and part of a larger attempt to delegitimize the Palestinian cause.


Initially, the University of Ottawa implemented "interim measures" while an inquiry was ongoing, during which Dr. Ge continued to earn his full pay and benefits. A petition demanding his reinstatement received over 65,000 signatures, indicating widespread support for Dr. Ge and raising concerns about free speech and the right to criticize government policy without risking professional repercussions. On January 20, 2024, despite being reinstated by the UofO, Dr. Ge declared that he had no plans to return. He went on to say[vi], "I feel incredibly harmed by this process, and I don't know how to continue within this institution because of what's happened." In February 2024, Dr. Ge participated[vii] in a weeklong medical mission in Gaza's southernmost city (Rafah) and was astounded by the desperate conditions people in the war-torn region are facing.

Last Updated


[i] White-Crummy, A. “Doctor suspended from U of O residency after pro-Palestinian social media posts,” Nov. 21. 2023, CBC News, accessed Mar. 1, 2024 at

[ii] “Anti-Palestinian Racism: Naming, Framing and Manifestations,” Apr. 25, 2022, Arab Canadian Lawyers Association, accessed Mar. 4, 2024 at

[iii] Zandbergen, R., “U of O doctor suspended for pro-Palestinian posts says he's been reinstated, won't go back,” Jan. 20, 2024, accessed Mar. 1, 2024 at

[iv] Basu, B., “Abuse of power’: Hospitals, med schools crack down on Palestine advocacy,” Feb. 29, 2024, The Breach, accessed Mar. 4, 2024 at

[v] Ge, Y., “My resignation letter to the CMA,” Dec. 22, 2023, Yipeng's global health journal, accessed Mar. 1, 2024 at

[vi] Zandbergen, R., “U of O doctor suspended for pro-Palestinian posts says he's been reinstated, won't go back,” Jan. 20, 2024, accessed Mar. 1, 2024 at

[vii] Steven, B.L., “Sanctioned U of O doctor describes harrowing conditions in Rafah after humanitarian trip,” Feb. 28, 2024, CBC News, accessed Mar. 1, 2024 at