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Right to Education

NEW REPORT: Palestinian Academia Undermined

Written by admin  •  Monday, 03.06.2013, 10:21

birzeit uni(Photo: Birzeit University)

The Right to Enter Campaign last week launched a new report entitled: ‘Academia Undermined: Israeli Restrictions on Foreign National Academics in Palestinian Higher Education Institutions’. Right to Education volunteer Ruhan Nagra served as field researcher on the report.

Executive Summary

The quality of Palestinian education and higher education in particular, has been very negatively impacted by the prolonged Israeli military occupation. Schools and universities have been closed for extended periods. Students, staff and faculty have had restricted access to schools and institutions of higher education due to the pervasive and arbitrary Israeli regime of internal movement restrictions. The impacts on all levels of education have been well documented.

This report focuses on only one of the many problems related to movement and access restrictions that affect the quality of and access to education in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt): the implications of Israeli restrictions on entry and residency for foreign academics wishing to serve at institutes of higher education operating in the (oPt). It is important to note that the term “foreign” is something of a misnomer: Israel treats all individuals without an Israeli-issued identity card [“hawiyya”] as a foreigner even if they are of Palestinian origin and even if they and/or their parents are born in Palestine. Thus “foreign” academics refers to anyone who does not hold a Palestinian identity card and must therefore enter the oPt on a foreign passport regardless of whether or not they
are of Palestinian origin. “Foreign” academics or “foreign” nationals could therefore be of
Palestinian origin (as is frequently the case) or have no Palestinian roots.

The report details

  • The impact on the quality of education provided, and
  • The impact of the isolation of Palestinian academia from the broader academic community on the development of their academic institutions and educational development in general.

Read the full report here

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