Wednesday, January 31, 2007

EU embargo punishes Palestinian children

Palestine's empty schools:

Yesterday’s report by the British committee of MPs, the Commons Select Committee on International Development, argued that the financial embargo of EU aid to the Palestinian Authority (PA) is having a disastrous effect.

This is certainly true, for example most schools in Palestine have been shut since March 2006, as the staff have not been paid and are therefore on strike. The photographs here show a school in the village of Beir Fajjar, where normally 80% of the girls go on the higher education. Their families know that success in education is an escape route for their children.

Britain and the EU is also silent while Israel withholds tax and customs revenues collected by them on behalf of the PA in occupied East Jeruslaelm, and Israel. This is Palestine's money, and the tax collectioon is a key term of the Oslo agreement, that Israel in now in breach of.

The violent context that Palestinian children are raised under, with an occupation army on their streets, is reflected by signs banning weapons in the schools.

The strike is causing extreme distress, and children are not being educated. The class for the oldest girls coming up the their university entrance exams is being taught just 2 or 3 hours per week on an unpaid voluntary basis by the head teacher.

Note that the financial embargo is intended to punish Hamas, but this town did not vote for Hamas, and the children have no vote at all. The graffiti by the school door is for the secular Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There are tons of opportunities out there, but the new need to be open to spot something that's just under your nose!
"christians and moslems can be friends"