Educational materials produced by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) contain content that encourages jihad, violence and martyrdom, in addition to promoting anti-Semitism, according to an analysis by IMPACT-se.

The Israeli NGO—which monitors curricula to assess whether young people are being indoctrinated with hate—focused on materials labeled for use in the Palestinian territories in 2022 that did not appear on UNRWA’s new education portal as is required.

Among the examples cited by IMPACT-se was a grammar exercise teaching that “the Palestinians sacrifice their blood to liberate Jerusalem.” Spelling and vocabulary exercises cited include sentences involving “jihad warriors” fighting against “the occupier [Israel],” as well as a commitment to “resisting the enemy courageously.”

One poem describes dying as Palestinian martyrs by killing Israelis in terrorist attacks as a “hobby.”

IMPACT-se noted that the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, recently discussed anti-Semitism in UNRWA education at a House Appropriations Committee budget hearing, calling it “a red line for all of us.” She asserted that the Biden administration was working “very closely” with UNRWA, has “monitored their work,” and “will be watching what they [UNRWA] do with these textbooks.”

IMPACT-se CEO Marcus Sheff stressed that Washington is currently financing UNRWA to the tune of $338 million annually, the majority of which goes to education.

“Sadly, it is clear that hate teaching in UNRWA schools is increasing rather than abating since U.S. funding was restarted. Surely, the will can be found to enforce policy, given that red lines are being crossed so egregiously,” Sheff said.

After a similar scandal last year,” he continued, “UNRWA promised that all offending material produced by them would be removed. It seems that UNRWA has interpreted this as removal from the website where it can be scrutinized, rather than removal from actual classrooms.”


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