Photo: Ein Samiya school before the demolition on 17 August 2023 – OCHA
The Ein Samiya school, funded by the EU and located northeast of Ramallah, was demolished by Israeli authorities on Wednesday, 17 August, just before the next academic school year is about to begin on 29th August.
The school served 50 students from grades one through nine for the few remaining Palestinian families remaining following the displacement of most of the herding community due to relentless Israeli settler violence attacks, demolitions, and creeping confiscation of grazing land for their sheep and goat herds.
The school was in Area C of the West Bank and had not been granted a building permit by Israeli authorities. On Friday, 18th August the EU said it was “appalled” by the demolition. It demanded that Israeli authorities respect Palestinian children’s right to education and called for Israel to compensate the EU for funding lost due to the demolition.
For greater insight into the coercive environment created by Israeli settlers which has made it impossible for Palestinians in herding communities to remain in their homes, see this article.
- Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes and structures vital for living continues on virtually a daily basis and are gross violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention – see ICAHD’s monthly reports.
- At least another 58 Palestinian schools in the West Bank have received demolition orders due to lack of building permits which Israeli authorities do not provide. According to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, all children have the right to education.
- Masafer Yatta in the South Hebron Hills remains at imminent threat with the lives of more than 1000 Palestinians fearing the demolition of their homes and forced displacement.
Ask the UK government to:
- Implement sanctions on the Israeli government for violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention and international law because of the ongoing demolitions of homes, schools and other structures vital for living.
- Insist that a protection force be provided for Palestinians in Masafer Yatta and all communities in Area C.
- Call British company JCB to account for war crimes because of its lack of due diligence in allowing its equipment to be used in home demolitions and the resulting forced displacement of the occupied Palestinian population.
Breaking news – Jubbet Al Dib school demolished
Some Palestinian children in the West Bank, returned to school on Sunday, 20th August 2023. However, the children in the elementary school at Jubbet Al Dib, located near Bethlehem, arrived at their school only to discover that their school had been destroyed by Israeli authorities the night before.
The school had been constructed using tires following the demolition of the school in May 2023. At that time, locals put up tents to enable the students to finish their academic year. The EU had also helped to fund that school and spoke out against its demolition. The local people thought that to save money and for fast construction, the new school facility would be made using tires.
Yet again we have learned that words of condemnation mean nothing to the Israeli authorities who simply ignore them.
Photo: Demolished Jubbet Al Dib school, 20 Aug 2023 – HIRN