At 7:35pm on Friday, 14 September 2018, Israeli artillery fired three shells at the town of Abasan Al-Kabira in the east of Khan Younis. Two shells hit empty land in the eastern part of the town. A third shell hit Abu T’aima School, also in the eastern part of Abasan Al-Kabira. The UNRWA-run, co-ed school operates on a double shift for 2,500 primary and preparatory school students aged six to 15.
Two classrooms were partially damaged in the attack. On the next day, 15 September 2018, UNRWA announced that classes would be suspended for both shifts of students in order for the damaged classrooms to be repaired and for the rubble to be cleared.
Al Mezan Center for Human Rights condemns the attack on the school. Attacks on schools harm the behavioural and psychological well-being of children and hinder their academic development.
Al Mezan continues to be deeply concerned by the Israeli military’s attacks on schools. Since 28 September 2000, Al Mezan has documented 399 such attacks by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip.
Al Mezan urges the international community to take effective steps to pressure the Israeli authorities to comply with legal obligations to refrain from attacking civilian infrastructure. Al Mezan reiterates its call on the international community to provide protection for Palestinian civilians and civilian objects in the Gaza Strip.