LFI vice-chair Dame Louise Ellman MP has today presented a ten minute rule bill in parliament designed to stop the Palestinian Authority education system using British taxpayers’ money to fund a school curriculum which incites the murder of Israelis.
Supported by a cross-party group of MPs, Dame Louise’s bill will mandate that UK assistance to the Palestinian Authority education system must comply with international values of peace and tolerance. It will also require an annual review to ensure compliance.
Between 2016-2018, the PA introduced a new curriculum for both primary and secondary school children. It teaches the virtues of martyrdom and becoming a jihadi. Martyrdom and jihad are, in the words of one textbook for children aged 11, “the most important meanings of life”. “Drinking the cup of bitterness with glory,” it suggests, “is much sweeter than a pleasant long life accompanied by humiliation.” Teenagers are taught that those who sacrifice themselves will be rewarded with “72 virgin brides in paradise”. So-called martyrs – such as Dalal Mughrabi, who led the infamous 1978 “Coastal Road Massacre” in which 38 Israelis, including 13 children, were murdered – are held up as role models.
Through the payment of the salaries of PA Ministry of Education civil servants and teachers involved in implementing it, ministers have admitted that British aid is directly helping to support the delivery of this new curriculum.
LFI, and our Parliamentary supporters, have been at the forefront of campaigning against incitement in the PA education system. We have exposed the Palestinian schools named after Terrorists or Nazi collaborators, urged an independent cross-party inquiry into the issue, asked questions in Parliament about the issue, and sent letters to the Prime Minister and Department for International Development demanding change.
Jennifer Gerber, Director of Labour Friends of Israel, said: “Time and time again the government has refused to act in response to the incitement in the PA curriculum that they continue to support. Despite being warned over 18 months ago about the content of these lessons in hatred, UK taxpayers continue to fund a curriculum that does nothing to promote peace. It’s high time ministers stopped dragging their feet and took a stand. That’s why Dame Louise’s bill will mandate that all future assistance to the PA must promote UNESCO-derived standards for peace and tolerance in school education and require an annual review to ensure compliance.”