The NUS have elected a student previously criticised for failing to condemn the Islamic State (Isis) and anti-Semitism as president of the National Union of Students. On 20 April the NUS voted Bouattia as the NUS's first black Muslim woman president after she won 50.9% of the vote defeating incumbent, Megan Dunn.
Her win came despite an open letter penned by almost 50 Jewish student leaders saying they were "extremely concerned" by her views amid rising anti-Semitism on British campus'. The newly-elected Bouattia said after her win that she wanted to put "liberation at the heart of our work". She said: "From cuts to maintenance grants, college closures, the black attainment gap and the Prevent agenda, the number of voices and groups being silenced by this government grows by day."
After the event she also took to Twitter to praise a new Trans student campaign implemented at the conference. Amongst her previous campaigns included "Why Is My Curriculum White?" and in 2011 she co-wrote a blog for a Friends of Palestine campaign group saying "the University of Birmingham is something of a Zionist outpost in British Higher Education".
In 2014 she questioned the value of the Middle East peace talks warning of the influence of "mainstream Zionist-led media outlets" at a Gaza and Palestinian Revolution event. And also that year she rejected a motion put forward by other students to condemn Daesh (Isis).
The NUS says Bouattia disputed the wording of the motion and not the politics and methods of Isis. A spokesperson said: "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."
Also during the NUS conference in Brighton, delegates argued against marking Holocaust Memorial Day. Some speakers said that the NUS was "ignoring and forgetting" other genocides.
The Oxford University Students' Union (OUSU) decided that they would not support Bouattia's bid before the election due to the letter sent by the Jewish students. But last week the 28-year-old rejected claims of anti-semitism.
She said in an open letter: "It seems I have been misrepresented. I am extremely uncomfortable with insinuations of anti-Semitism. I want to be clear that for me to take issue with Zionist politics is not me taking issue with being Jewish."