Urgent Call for Action: Save Khalet Amera School at Imminent Risk of Demolition

  • Date: 2024-01-25

The forced displacement and dispossession of Palestinians across the oPt takes place in the context of Israel's prolonged occupation and lack of respect for international law. This intensification of forced displacement is occurring now more than ever with the military aggression on the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

The Israeli occupying authorities are ramping up its demolition campaign against Palestinian structures including Palestinian schools. As of today, there are around 22,000-30,000 demolition orders that have been given to Palestinian structures in the West Bank. There are 57 schools (49 in Area C, and 8 in East Jerusalem) serving over 5,550 students and 700 teachers, are currently at risk of demolition by Israeli civil administration.

Today, we bring to your attention the need to save a newly added school (Khalet Amera school) at imminent risk of demolition. Currently there are 39 children attending the school (19 Girls, 20 Boys), (1st Grade-4th Grade), (children ages 6-10 years old). The students desperately need to go to school and access education. Since its establishment, the students and teachers have been under severe stress, living in fear due to the multiple attacks against the school. It is important to note that on 17th of January, the Israeli settlers, some accompanied by Israeli soldiers vandalized the school and confiscated some equipment.

Previously, students from the Khalet Amera community went to other schools that are hard to reach due to access and movement challenges, exposed to adverse weather conditions, dangerous routes (heavily settler trafficked bypass roads) and settler violence. Fear from settler attacks is hindering the ability of students and teachers to access schools, resulting either in missing out on school days, or leaving them no option but to drop out from school.

 

Palestinian children in Area C of the occupied West Bank are routinely denied access to education. They face hurdles such as a lack of adequate nearby education facilities, violence from settlers and lack of development or expansion to meet the rising needs, due to Israel’s discriminatory planning regime. Currently only 1 per cent of building permits are granted to Palestinians. 

 

The Society of Saint Yves lawyer submitted an appeal but is extremely concerned that the provision of legal alone is not enough to save the school and protect the children's right to education. The school can be demolished at any time: Urgent diplomatic intervention is required, at a level commensurate with the gravity of the violation:

 

 

  • Stop the demolition of the threatened school of Khalet Amera and guarantee children the right to education.
  • Increase advocacy efforts and issue public statements for an immediate end to school demolitions and protection of Palestinian children rights.
  • Support children, increase international presence at the schools at risk of demolition.
  • Address the root causes of the issue and affirm the Palestinian rights to self-determination, right to education, right to health etc.