Skip to main content

Palestinian parents told to keep children away from knives

A letter distributed to Palestinian schools in East Jerusalem has told parents to teach their children about the 'finality of death'
Palestinian school girls walk in line in the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem's Old City (AFP)

Jerusalem’s educational authority has sent out a letter to Palestinian parents of students in East Jerusalem asking them to keep their children away from knives and inform them of the “finality of death”.

The letter, distributed in East Jerusalem on Monday and Tuesday to around 20,000 parents, called on parents to look for "out of the ordinary behaviour which raises concerns the child may cause harm to themselves or someone else” and to prevent their children gaining access to "dangerous objects such as knives".

"Children have a hard time understanding and interpreting events and messages they are exposed to, and adults have the central role in mediating these for them, and helping them understand them properly, and not to be drawn in by rumours and distorted information,” read the letter.

"The view of death among children develops relatively slowly, and there is a real difficulty in understanding the finality of death. A dialogue with the children on this matter can prevent hasty decisions by children to harm themselves or others.”

Under a subsection titled "Monitoring the Children", the letter urges parents to keep a physical proximity with their children at all times and spend more time at home.

A letter distributed in Jewish-majority West Jerusalem excluded this and only gave information on the additional budget allocated to schools for security and called on parents to help volunteer to help out with security.

Three Israelis were stabbed by a Palestinian man next to the central bus station in Rishon Letzion, south of Tel Aviv on Monday.

Peter Lerner, an Israeli army spokesperson, said that the attacker was a 19-year-old Palestinian from Hebron who was arrested by Israeli security forces following a “stabbing spree on the streets of Rishon Letzion”.

At least one of the Israelis stabbed sustained severe wounds. Two were transferred to the Asaf Harofeh hospital for treatment.

On Sunday, a Palestinian was shot dead by Israeli forces after allegedly attempting to stab an Israeli soldier at the Jalameh checkpoint in the northern occupied West Bank city of Jenin.

A second Palestinian described by Israeli police as an accomplice was arrested at the scene.

Nine Israelis as well as 72 Palestinians have been killed in a wave of violence since the start of October, raising fears of another Palestinian intifada.

Stay informed with MEE's newsletters

Sign up to get the latest alerts, insights and analysis, starting with Turkey Unpacked

Middle East Eye delivers independent and unrivalled coverage and analysis of the Middle East, North Africa and beyond. To learn more about republishing this content and the associated fees, please fill out this form. More about MEE can be found here.