Emergency Action: protect Khan Al Ahmar school from demolition

On 19 February 2017, Israeli authorities issued demolition orders to 40 homes and a primary school in the Palestinian Bedouin community of Khan Al Ahmar and are set to demolish the school this Thursday (2 March)

Twitter action: Call for this school to be protected saved

Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) supports the call of 21 Italian aid agencies for the protection of the community and school of Khan Al Ahmar. The community is one of 27 Bedouin communities in Area C – the 60 percent of the West Bank where Israel maintains full civil and military control – which is visited regularly by the MAP-supported mobile clinic.

“The international community must work together to provide assistance and protection to vulnerable communities and insist that international law is respected.”

Robert Piper, the UN’s aid and development co-ordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory, said: “When schools are demolished, the right to education of Palestinian children is also threatened. The international community must work together to provide assistance and protection to vulnerable communities and insist that international law is respected.”

Please help us call for the protection of the school and of Khan Al Ahmar community. Delegations of British parliamentarians coordinated by MAP and Caabu often go to the village’s primary school and have witnessed the harm caused to Bedouin communities living in Area C

Click the link below to send a tweet to Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson: "Israel set to demolish Khan al Ahmar school this Thursday. @BorisJohnson please prevent 178 Bedouin children from losing their classrooms.”

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Below is the statement from 21 Italian aid agencies calling for the protection of Khan al Ahmar community:

Israeli authorities accompanied by army and police forces this week entered the Bedouin village of Khan al Ahmar in the Occupied West Bank, issuing military orders placing every structure in the community under threat of demolition and leaving 130 people, half of whom are children, at serious risk of forcible transfer. Such orders usually precede demolitions. While distributing the orders, 178 children were prevented from entering the Rubber Tire school [which serves the surrounding Bedouin communities].

Many threatened structures were built as part of humanitarian programmes funded by the Italian government, including the Rubber Tire school built by the Italian NGO Vento di Terra with the support of UN Agencies and Conferenza Episcopale Italiana. Other Italian funded projects under threat include structures supporting women dairy producers, an Oxfam project.

Israel confirmed its intent to demolish the Rubber Tire School in September 2016. 178 children currently attend the school, ranging in age from 6 to 12 years old.

Khan Al Ahmar village is located in Area C of the West Bank close to Kfar Adumim settlement, east of Jerusalem, in the so-called “E1” corridor. The E1 plan, formally put on hold by Israel after protests from the international community, would see the annexation of Ma’ale Adumim, Kfar Adumim and Qedar settlements inside an enlarged separation wall, disconnecting Jerusalem and further dividing it from the West Bank, and separating Palestinian communities from each other.

A bill to annex the illegal settlement of Ma’ale Adumim to Israel was discussed last month [January] by the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislative Affairs, as a preliminary step towards its submission to the Israeli parliament for approval.

The UN has repeatedly warned that the imposition of the proposed ‘relocation’ of communities without their free and informed consent would amount to forcible transfer and eviction, a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

As humanitarian and human rights organizations working in the area, we are calling on the Government of Italy, the EU, its Member States as well as the broader international community to take concrete steps to prevent the forcible transfer of the Khan Al Ahmar Bedouin community

The signatory organizations ask the Government of Italy and Third States to:

  • Publicly condemn and protest against the issuance of stop-work orders and demolition orders against the structures in the Khan Al Ahmar community.
  • Take immediate measures to prevent the demolition of all the affected structures.
  • Engage directly with the Government of Israel reiterating that the forcible transfer of the Khan Al Ahmar community is a grave breach of the Geneva Conventions and the seizure and destruction of humanitarian assistance is a violation of IHL.
  • Impress upon the Government of Israel the immediate cessation and guarantee of non-repetition of adverse developments in Area C and East Jerusalem, including the destruction or seizure of property and educational infrastructure and forcible transfer of Palestinians within or outside of occupied territory.

 Signatory Organisations:

  • Vento di Terra
  • Oxfam Italia
  • GVC
  • AOI - Associazione ONG Italiane
  • ARCS – Culture Solidali
  • CISP
  • CISS
  • Educaid
  • Fairtrade Italia
  • FORUMSAD-Forum Permanente per il Sostegno a Distanza
  • Nexus Emilia Romagna
  • Overseas
  • Piattaforma Italiana ONG Mediterraneo e Medio Oriente
  • RTM
  • Terre Des Hommes Italia
  • VIS

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