The McGill Daily - - International Stories -

On Au­gust 23 in Jub­bet alDhib, a vil­lage in the oc­cu­pied West Bank, Pales­tinian chil­dren ready to at­tend their first day of school were shocked to find the build­ing de­mol­ished. The six- class­room school had been razed to the ground by Is­raeli mil­i­tary forces the night be­fore, leav­ing vol­un­teers and teach­ers scram­bling to con­struct makeshift class­rooms for the 64 stu­dents. A tem­po­rary tent to ac­com­mo­date the chil­dren was pitched to re­place the car­a­van school, which was do­nated by Euro­pean Union hu­man­i­tar­ian or­ga­ni­za­tions.

In de­fi­ance of the de­struc­tion, stu­dents peace­fully protested by singing the na­tional an­them be­fore re­turn­ing home with new school back­packs.

The build­ing and all school ma­te­ri­als had been con­fis­cated and/or de­mol­ished by Is­raeli forces on the grounds that no per­mit had been is­sued for the con­struc­tion of the school. Re­ports claim local res­i­dents threw rocks at the sol­diers in protest, while the sol­diers used tear gas and rub­ber- coated steel bul­lets to clear the area.

The school it­self had been a step for­ward for Pales­tinian chil­dren in Jub­bet al- Dhib in terms of gain­ing eas­ier ac­cess to ed­u­ca­tion. Jub­bet al- Dhib is lo­cated in Area C of the West Bank, and is un­der the com­plete con­trol of Is­raeli forces, which makes ob­tain­ing a per­mit for open­ing a Pales­tinian school al­most im­pos­si­ble. The next clos­est Pales­tinian school to the vil­lage in ques­tion is an hour’s walk away over dan­ger­ous moun­tain ter­rain.

This in­ci­dent is not an anom­aly, but rather one de­mo­li­tion among 92 oth­ers this year alone con­ducted by Is­raeli au­thor­i­ties in the oc­cu­pied West Bank, de­spite wide­spread in­ter­na­tional con­dem­na­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.