Britain to lead review of incitement in Palestinian textbooks


(JTA) — The British government and other donors to the Palestinian education system will undertake a review of incitement against Israel and Jews in Palestinian textbooks.

“There is no place in education for materials or practices that incite young minds toward violence,” Parliament member Alistair Burt, a Foreign Office minister, said during a debate Wednesday in the House of Commons, the British parliament’s lower house, on incitement in Palestinian Authority textbooks.

“Our continued support will come with a continued strong challenge to the Palestinian Authority on education-sector incitement,” he added. “We are in the final stages of discussions to take forward a textbook review jointly with other donors.”

The review should be completed by September 2019, he added. The review will be “evidence-based and rigorous,” Burt also said.

The debate was convened at the request of lawmaker Joan Ryan, chair of the Labour Friends of Israel.

Ryan quoted examples from a report from October about a reform in the Palestinian Authority curriculum. The changes it brought meant that “radicalization is pervasive across this new curriculum, to a greater extent than before,” according to the report by the Israel-based Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education.

One book for 11th graders, “Islamic Education, Vol. 1,” states that: “The corruption of the children of Israel in the land was and will be the cause of their annihilation, and this Islamic creed applies to every tyrant and oppressor.”

Another book for 10th graders, titled “Arabic Language, Vol. 1,” ignores Jewish presence in the Land of Israel or depicts it as a common cause against which Muslims and Christians must do battle.

Separately, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced on July 2 that Australia would cease its funding to the Palestinian Authority altogether over its salaries for terrorists jailed in Israel, including murderers.

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