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Right to Education

Palestinian School at Risk of Demolition

Written by admin  •  Saturday, 19.11.2011, 13:47

A primary school for Palestinian Bedouin children in the Jerusalem area is to be destroyed after Israeli settlers pushed the military to carry out the demolition. It could be destroyed at any time. Seventy pupils from the Arab Jahalin tribe will be left without a school. Demolitions of Bedouin homes in the area are also scheduled to take place soon.

The plan to demolish the Jahalin school is part of a larger campaign to forcibly displace Bedouins who reside in the area east of Jerusalem, near to the Israeli settlements of Maale Adumim and Kfar Adumim The petition cites a demolition order against the school issued by the Israeli military authorities in June 2009; it was issued on the grounds that the school was built without an official permit; in practice, it is virtually impossible for Palestinians in Area C to obtain building permits from the Israeli authorities.

Some of the families in Khan al-Ahmar are already facing demolition of their homes and the shelters for their sheep. In July 2011, the Civil Administration upheld final demolition orders for 12 residential structures and four animalshelters in the community. A petition against these demolitions is pending in the Israeli High Court. Khan al-Ahmar is one of 20 communities in the Jerusalem periphery that is targeted for forced displacement by the Israeli military. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs confirmed that the Israeli military has recently approved plans to move the 2,300 Bedouins out of the municipal area of Maale Adumim settlement, where they have lived since 1948, without consulting them.

These Israeli settlements, like all Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, are illegal under international law. The school serves several Bedouin communities in the Khan al-Ahmar area, which is located in Area C of the West Bank, where Israel has full civil and military control. These Bedouin communities have faced persistent harassment from the Israeli military authorities and Israeli settlers.

A group of Israelis from Kfar Adumim filed a petition with the Israeli High Court of Justice on 1 August 2011 seeking an explanation from the Israeli military as to why the school has not already been demolished.

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