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The European Union Representative issues the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah.
The EU missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah express strong concern about the dismantling by the Israeli authorities of a PA built school, serving 40 Palestinian schoolchildren from the first to the sixth grade in As Simiya, in Area C in the Southern West Bank, on 5 December.
This is the fifth demolition or confiscation of school and kindergarten structures which the Israeli authorities have carried out in the West Bank in 2018. In total, 50 schools in Area C and East Jerusalem have demolition or stop work orders creating a coercive environment affecting more than 5,000 school children.
Every child has the right to access education and States have an obligation to protect, respect and fulfil this right, by ensuring that schools are inviolable safe spaces for children.
In line with its long-standing position on this issue, the EU calls upon the Israeli authorities to halt demolitions and confiscations of Palestinian houses and property, in accordance with its obligations as an occupying power under international humanitarian law, and to cease the policies of settlement construction and expansion, of designating land for exclusive Israeli use and of denying Palestinian development, all of which threaten the two-state solution.
The EU missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah call on the Israeli authorities to rebuild the school structures in the same place without delay.
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