The European Parliament’s Budget Committee voted to freeze 15 million euros (17.6 million dollars) in aid granted to the Palestinian Authority (PA) until it reforms its school textbooks.
According to a report on the television channel i24News, the Commission decided to withhold five percent of European Union aid in “reserve” until the PA pledges to bring its school curricula “in line with UNESCO standards for peace and tolerance in school education.
The Commission is concerned that Palestinian textbooks “contain across all subjects numerous examples of violent descriptions, hate speeches – particularly against Israel – and glorification of jihad and martyrdom”.
The EU is the main economic supporter of the PA and heavily finances its education system.
The decision comes a week after i24News released a news report saying that the new Palestinian school curriculum is designed to “prepare Palestinian children to join the resistance against Israel.
An analysis by the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education (IMPACT-Se) of the new Palestinian textbooks for grades 1-12 states that they encourage Palestinian children “to sacrifice their lives in the name of religion” and glorify martyrdom and violent resistance.
The decision has yet to be ratified by the Plenary of the European Parliament.