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Knesset education panel: Let Palestinian students attend Israeli universities December 29, 2006

Posted by C.A.R.D in Card, Culture, Discriminate, Discrimination, Israel, Israeli, Isreal, Racism, Racist.
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The Knesset Education, Culture, and Sports Committee on Tuesday called on Defense Minister Amir Peretz to overturn the sweeping policy of denying Palestinian students entry to study at Israeli universities.

“The impression we received from today’s debate is that instead of examining the relevance of each request, since the start of the year it has become worse, even in comparison to the permits issued at the height of the intifada,” said the panel chairman, MK Michael Melchior (Labor-Meimad).

“We are not dismissing security considerations, but the sweeping policy goes against the basic right to learn and needs to be changed so that each [individual] request is examined,” said the former deputy education minister.

It emerged during the panel’s debate that despite repeated declarations by the Education Ministry, the sweeping ban affects students who had already started courses at Israeli institutions and as a result they cannot complete their studies.

A Defense Ministry representative, Major Liron Alush, told the panel that it had already been decided to permit students who have started courses to enter Israel in order to complete their studies. There are 13 to 14 Palestinian students who fell into this category, she said.

Others present at the debate disputed Alush’s claim, arguing that the ban did in fact apply to students who had already begun their courses.

The debate came in the wake of a petition to the High Court of Justice by Gisha (Access), an association that advocates freedom of movement in the territories.

The petition was submitted on the behalf of Sawsan Salameh, who received an excellence scholarship to attend Hebrew University’s doctoral program but could not attend due to the ban.

Salameh lives in the West Bank, and there is no doctoral program available to her within the Palestinian Authority.

C.a.r.d {Citizens Against Racism and Discrimination} Source: Haaretz.com

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