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Israeli forces fire tear gas near East Jerusalem schools

Sept. 1, 2014 4:49 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 2, 2014 10:17 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters at schools in the Jabal al-Mukabbir neighborhood of East Jerusalem on Monday, with dozens of parents and children suffering gas inhalation.

A member of a parents committee, Hasan Abdo, told Ma'an that Israeli forces deployed around schools on Monday and fired tear gas in the neighborhood.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told Ma'an police came to the area to investigate a "local incident" in which Palestinians were preventing a new headmistress from entering a school.

Rosenfeld said locals were angry that this particular headmistress was chosen.

Palestinians hurled rocks at police in the area, who responded with tear gas, he said.

"Three policemen were injured -- one of them was taken to the hospital and two were injured lightly," Rosenfeld added.

Abdo said Israel's Jerusalem municipality deliberately neglects schools in East Jerusalem, despite the fact that parents and students have lobbied for better services for Palestinian students.

Four out of eight municipality schools in Jabal al-Mukabbir have not yet started the school year because the demands of the parents' committees have still not been met, he said.

Over 6,000 students use the eight municipality schools but there is an acute shortage of classrooms, with over 60 additional rooms needed to meet demand.

The Israeli municipality does not work "seriously" with the the parents committee, even though it promised to review educational issues raided by the groups, Abdo added.
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