Breaking comment

14yo boy excluded from school for ‘racist abuse’ – for shouting ‘free Palestine’

A 14-year-old Manchester pupil has been excluded from his school for what the school decided was ‘racist abuse’ – for shouting ‘free Palestine’ in class.

The declaration came in the run-up to Saturday’s Nakba Day, when Palestinians remember the Nakba, or ‘catastrophe’, of their expulsion from their homes to make room for the new state of Israel – and as aggression by Israeli forces escalated, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of civilians, including children.

A letter sent by the school to the boy’s parents informed them that the school had decided that he should be excluded from school – and banned from appearing in public during the exclusion – for the supposed ‘racist abuse’ of shouting ‘free Palestine’ in class. Skwawkbox has capitalised ‘Palestine’ even though the school’s letter did not:

Tamanna Rahman is a reporter, producer and director currently making films for the BBC – yet she tagged in media channels in a tweet about the school’s action. Rahman posted, including BBC News, Channel 4 News and others:

As well as numerous bombings, Israeli forces have also assaulted women in Sheikh Jarrah, where Palestinians have been resisting eviction from their homes, as footage released by Middle East Eye showed:

On Nakba Day on Saturday, hundreds of thousands of protesters marched in UK towns and cities in solidarity with Palestinians. The UK government has refused to condemn the actions of the Israeli state, despite a report by Human Rights Watch on the abuses perpetrated against Palestinians.

A petition launched less than two days ago on the government’s petitions site, calling for sanctions against Israel, has already been signed by almost a quarter of a million people – more than double the 100,000 at which the government is supposed to put the issue forward for debate in Parliament and almost twenty-five times the 10,000 at which the Tories are obliged to respond publicly to the petition:

Ms Rahman has approached the school for comment but appears to be still waiting for a response.

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