Legendary British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking died on Wednesday, leaving behind a legacy that transcends far beyond his scientific achievements.
Among many remarkable contributions to the world, Hawking was known to have spoken up regarding conflicts in the Middle East, especially in Palestine.
Hawking did not shy away from condemning Israel's ongoing crimes against the Palestinians, but instead publicly championed the Palestinian cause.
"A people under occupation will continue to resist any way they can," he said in 2009 while discussing the Gaza War.
During a time when normalizing ties with the occupying state is on the rise, here are some of the ways the late physicist supported Palestine:
1. When he publicly condemned an Israeli military operation in Gaza
2. When he boycotted the Israel Presidential Conference in 2013
In a decision that was considered a huge step forward for the BDS campaign, Hawking decided to boycott the famous conference in Israel in protest over the state's occupation of Palestine.
Hawking had initially accepted the invitation to the conference, which was sponsored by Israel's then-president Shimon Peres, to express his opinion on the prospects for a peace settlement and seize the opportunity to lecture in the West Bank.
After several emails from Palestinian academics, Hawking decided to withdraw his acceptance and boycott the conference altogether.
"Had I attended, I would have stated my opinion that the policy of the present Israeli government is likely to lead to disaster," Hawking said at the time, according to The Guardian.
3. When he congratulated a remarkable Palestinian teacher
"From one teacher to another, you are an inspiration to people everywhere. I am proud to call you a colleague," Hawking said in the video.
Al Hroub, who specializes in supporting children traumatized by violence, took home the one-million-dollar prize offered annually by the Varkey Foundation to "a super-special teacher."
4. When he urged his followers to donate money to Palestinian graduate students
Last February, the physicist asked his 4.2 million followers on Facebook to contribute to a crowdfunding campaign aimed to bring back a second edition of the Palestinian Advanced Physics School, a series of lectures in physics for Palestinian graduate students in the West Bank.
"I support the rights of scientists everywhere to freedom of movement, publication and collaboration," he wrote at the time.
Hawking had backed the first-ever Palestinian Advanced Physics School in 2016 and gave a video greeting during the session, where British, American, and Jordanian scientists discussed contemporary physics.