A Hungarian Member of the European Parliament has undertaken the arduous taks to convince EU authorities to stop funding the Palestinian Authority’s Education Ministry because it incites young Palestinians to hate Israelis which constitutes an impediment to peace between the two sides. Peter Niedermüller, who is Vice-President and Treasurer of the S&D Group (Socialists and Democrats) calls ‘’untolerable’’ what is shown on Palestinian television and in schoolbooks and says it runs against the idea of peace with Israel.
"If the Palestinian Authority really wants peace, the very first step is to educate the young generation to produce peace and not hate. Because if they are producing hate against Israel there will never be any kind of peace.They need to stop hate speech in schools and the education system and to look at Israel as a partner or a neighbor and not as an en enemy,’" he said.
Niedermüller will try to figure out during the next few weeks what can be don legally and politically to stop this education to hatred.
The EU and the PA are linked by an official agreement for political and financial aid. "So this is not very easy just to say. We need a political process and first of all we need a large and strong support for this initiative. The final decision will be made by the Council of Ministers of Finance of the EU member states," he said.
He acknowledges that in order to take an initiative he needs the support of much more MEPs who woud be ready to sign a letter to the European Commission and European Council Presidents just to start a process of investigation into this issue.
"And of course I will try to get in touch with the Israeli embassy in Brussels and to listen to their opinion because it is a very sensitive political issue and I am not going to do anything against the will and the political priorities of the Israeli government," Niedermüller told EJP.
In order to enlist his colleagues in the European Parliament, the Hungarian MEP hosted in Brussels a seminar with as guest speaker Itamar Marcus, founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), a Jerusalem-based research institute that has been studying the Palestinian world for the last twenty years from a broad range of perspectives by monitoring and analyzing the Palestinian Authority through its media and schoolbooks.
"Our big focus is children. What’s happening in their world. This is very significant as the European Commission, because in part of what we had exposed about the Palestinian Authority paying salaries to terrorists, decided not to fund the PA budget anymore but instead to give the money only and primarily to the Ministry of Education," said Itamar Marcus.
"And one of the things we found is that the Ministry of Education itself is one of the greatest impediments to peace with Israel." (...)
"The message must be: "If you kill an Israeli you an hero and if you make peace with Israel it’s a crime against humanity,’" Marcus said. "The message to the EU is: you must stop funding this. You can’t do this if you expect peace. The EU has to tell them it can’t give money for funding hatred. If you do so, we are not going to pay your teachers’ salaries if they are poisoning the kids with hatred," Marcus concluded.read more