Settlers torch, vandalize Nablus girl’s school
NABLUS — A group of Israeli settlers broke into an all girls’ school in the Nablus district village of As-Sawiya on Wednesday, setting fire to its storehouse containing furniture and unused sports equipment, the headmistress said.
Maysoon Sawalha said the school’s cleaning woman arrived to find the lock on the main door broken as well as that of the storehouse, with all its contents torched.
The fire did not spread to the rest of school because the water main is located in the storehouse she said, adding that “otherwise the whole school would have been set on fire.”
Settlers had also written racist slogans on the school’s walls, including “regards from the hill tops.”
“This is not the first attack on the school. Many attacks were carried out previously, the last of which was last year when settlers intercepted one of the classrooms and fired rounds of ammunition and gas canisters,” Sawalha said.
An Israeli military spokeswoman said a complaint had been filed with Israel’s Civil Administration and that the body was now directly in touch with Palestinian Authority officials to “keep things quiet” in the area. Israeli police, she added, are investigating the incident.
Sawalha called on international organizations to work on stopping such attacks “that put the life of the girls on risk causing them to suffer psychologically and panic out of such attacks.”
The suspected arson follows a wave of reports from Palestinian farmers that settlers have been setting fire to agricultural land since the beginning of the traditional olive harvest in October.
On 4 October, Israeli settlers were suspected of setting fire to a Bethlehem village mosque, after ransacking it and setting fire to the carpets.
Director of PA Ministry of Religious Endowment in Bethlehem Muhammad Ayish at the time describing the arson as a “campaign against everything Palestinian.”
On Tuesday, an Israeli rights group said that 90 percent of claims filed against settlers in the West Bank for assault to person or property against Palestinians fail to secure a conviction.