URGENT ACTION: Prevent demolition of Palestinian school
The Khan al-Ahmar primary school for Palestinian Bedouin children near Jerusalem will be demolished to make way for the expanding settlements leaving 70 students without a school. The Israeli authorities have also signalled their intention to demolish the homes of these children.
Please contact the Israeli embassy and Foreign Minister Rudd, addresses below, asking the Israeli authorities to:
• Put an immediate stop to the procedures leading to the demolition of the Jahalin school, as its destruction would be a violation to the right to education;
• Rescind all demolition orders for homes and animal shelters in Khan al-Ahmar;
• Suspend all plans to forcibly displace Bedouins from Area C in the West Bank;
• Immediately stop the construction and expansion of Israeli settlements and related infrastructure in the Occupied Palestinian Territories as a first step towards removing Israeli civilians living in such settlements.
Write to Israel’s ambassador in Australia:
His Excellency Mr Yuval ROTEM
6 Turrana Street, Yarralumla ACT 2600
Tel: (02) 6215 4500 Fax: (02) 6215 4555 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ask Kevin Rudd to intecede:
The Hon. Kevin Rudd, Minister for Foreign Affairs.
PO Box 6022, House of Representatives, Parliament House,
Canberra ACT 2600
Tel: (02) 6277 7500 Fax: (02) 6273 4112 Email: Kevin.Rudd.MP@aph.gov.au
Please write also to:
Israeli Minister of Defence, Ehud Barak
Ministry of Defence, 37 Kaplan Street, Hakirya, Tel Aviv 61909, Israel
Fax: +972 3 691 6940/ 696 2757, Email: email@example.com
Salutation: Dear Minister
Quartet Representative to the Middle East
The Office of Tony Blair, P.O. Box 60519, London, W2 7JU UK,
Salutation: Dear Mr Blair
From Amnesty International: “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. 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. 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 animal shelters 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.