A Major Step Toward Ending Incitement in the East Jerusalem Education System

An Israeli border police officer holds his weapon as Palestinians school children walk by in the East Jerusalem area, after clashes with Palestinian youths against Israel’s renovation works near the disputed Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City, Monday, Feb. 12, 2007. Jerusalem’s Jewish mayor has ordered a review of construction work near a holy site at the center of the Arab-Israeli conflict, a City Hall spokesman said Monday, an attempt to quell days of Muslim protests and condemnations from throughout the Arab world. (AP Phoito/Oded Balilty)

Following evidence provided by the ILF in a the Knesset Education Committee, the Education Ministry is required for the first time to provide information regarding its monitoring and enforcement procedures of educational materials used in East Jerusalem schools.

In a Knesset Education Committee hearing this week, the ILF demanded that the Education Ministry provide information previously requested regarding its enforcement and monitoring procedures of East Jerusalem schools. The Committee accepted the ILF’s demands and the required information will be submitted within 45 days. This information is vital in order to establish a course of action, either by way of legislation or by way of litigation.

Attorney Yifa Segal, Director of the ILF: “The State of Israel is fighting incitement with one hand and funding it with the other. Educating for terrorism, hate and anti-Semitism, is funded mostly by the State of Israel and enabled by it. We took action to hold this hearing in order to raise the issue and expose the existing failures in the East Jerusalem educational system, where content of Jihad, demonization of the State of Israel and the Jewish people are dangerously evident. Unfortunately there are numerous failures in monitoring and enforcing the content, and the State of Israel is obligated to ensure that students in East Jerusalem are exposed to acceptable educational materials, as are other students in Israel today”.

During the hearing, initiated by the ILF, and together with MK’s Oded Forer, Amir Ohana and Motti Yogev, the ILF exposed shocking and harsh evidence of the continuing incitement to terror and violence taking place in East Jerusalem schools. Approximately 100,000 students in East Jerusalem schools are exposed daily to educational material which glorifies Jihad, supports terror, encourages hate, anti-Semitism and the de-legitimization of the State of Israel and the Jewish people, portrays Palestine as being from Jordan to the sea, and encourages school children to reclaim it at all costs.

It is inconceivable that the State of Israel and particularly the Education Ministry is allowing this current state of affairs to continue, and therefore the ILF is acting in order to provide  operative tools to ensure that these dangerous acts of incitement cease to take place, and that these schools are monitored and overseen in a satisfactory manner.

To read the ILF Position Paper (in Hebrew) click here.