A probe has been launched after university freshers were pictured wearing t-shirts with racist slogans including “the Holocaust was a good time”.
The shocking messages hand-written on clothing included phrases such as: “Don’t speak to me if you’re not white”.
They were revealed by an outraged Palestinian student who secretly-snapped the offensive scribbles during a sports social event to celebrate the start of the year at the University of Exeter.
The photographs of the freshers’ event first emerged on +972 website – an online magazine concentrating on reporting events in Israel and Palestine.
The shocked University of Exeter student, who has asked not to be named, posted the images after coming back from the night out on Tuesday.
Alongside it he wrote: “Making light of genocide and white privilege is not ‘banter’, you f***ing imbeciles.”
The slogans were seen during a white T-shirt social event hosted by the Exeter Snowsports club.
During the event, students are invited to scribble comments on others’ shirts with felt-tip pens.
Exeter University student sports chiefs have now banned future white T-shirt social events following the incident.
And an urgent investigation has now been launched by the university itself.
A spokesman said: “The University of Exeter is an inclusive and friendly environment where all students are welcomed.
“Anti-Semitic, racist or bigoted behaviour in any form is not tolerated.
“An investigation was launched as soon as the University learnt of this incident.”
The Athletic Union, which oversees sport on the university campus, has also apologised for any offence caused.
Josh Callander, University of Exeter Athletic Union President, said: “The Athletic Union operates a zero-tolerance policy towards racist or bigoted behaviour.
“We have banned any future sporting social events which involve the practice of students writing on white t-shirts. We want to prevent anything like this happening again, and I would like to apologise to anyone affected.
“We have run more than 200 sporting taster sessions for new students this month and we are very disappointed that the unacceptable actions of a few individuals has overshadowed what has so far been a very successful Fresher’s Week.”
The university’s news website Exeposé reported the shirts were worn during a pub crawl for new students on Tuesday, which ended in Timepiece bar, an Exeter nightclub.
Lauren Fry, the president of Exeter Snowsports society, told +972 magazine she was unaware of the slogans during the event.
She said: “Comments like these are not tolerated within our club.”
She said Timepiece staff asked people to leave or change if they were seen with abusive slogans on their shirts.
“We apologise if we offended any one and we feel appropriate action was taken on the night to deal with these type of slogans if they were seen on anyone at our social.
“Snowsports has a zero tolerance policy for these actions and we will be contacting our members in due course to express this.”
“Some individuals might think that it’s merely a joke and doesn’t mean much but these were real events which happened to real people, and as such they should be respected.
“We urge the university to investigate and punish the students involved accordingly.”
Exeter university is one of only eight to be ranked within the top 10 of all three major national league tables for 2016.
It is also a member of the Russell Group of leading research-intensive UK universities.