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Right to Education

Books and paper banned from entering Gaza as new academic year begins, 200 more schools desperately needed

Written by admin  •  Monday, 24.08.2009, 17:52

With the academic year about to begin, the Gaza Strip is falling short on schools.

During the major Israeli attacks of late December and January, many schools were destroyed or partially destroyed. They have not been repaired or rebuilt because reconstruction materials are still banned under the siege.

Palestinian Legislative Council member and Chairman of the People’s Committee against the Siege, Jamal Al Khudari, said today that the Gaza Strip needs to build more than 200 new schools to accommodate students.

Khudari told the press on the first day of school that population increase and scientific developments are adding to the necessity for more schools.

In Gaza City the PLC member said Sunday, “The embargo and the Israeli closure of crossings, the prevention of the entry of raw materials, supplies and construction materials, have prevented the building of new schools, and the reconstruction and rehabilitation of schools and educational institutions that were shelled in the recent Israeli aggression.”

Al Khudari made a direct link with that reality and the overcrowding of schools. Students are being sent to school in two shifts due to lack of class space.

“The burden on students, parents and teachers is increased,” he said today. “The challenges during the reach for the excellence and innovation that characterizes the Palestinian people, are also increased.”

As the Chairman of the People’s Committee against the Siege, Al Khudari said that all help was welcome in pressuring the Israeli government, which controls all borders, to allow the introduction of schools supplies, including books and paper, into Gaza.

He added, “Despite all of these obstacles, students from Gaza prove day after day their distinctiveness, creativity and initiative towards progress and prosperity.”

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