Ref: 40/2008

 

PCHR strongly condemns the yesterday’s regrettable clashes between two groups of students in Al-Azhar University. These clashes resulted in the injury of 13 students, one of them seriously, after a student threw a hand grenade during the clashes. The Centre calls for prosecuting the perpetrators of these clashes, which are a continuation of the security chaos. The Centre calls for respecting and protecting Universities and educational freedom guaranteed by the law in order to ensure the continuation of the educational process.

The Center’s preliminary investigations indicate that at approximately 10:45 on Sunday, 4 May, a student at Al-Azhar University threw a hand grenade in the middle of a group of students during a dispute between two groups in the University’s campus in Gaza City. The explosion resulted in the injury of 13 students by shrapnel. One of the students was seriously injured. The University administration issued a statement pointing, “The University administration has formed a commission of inquiry into the incident, and will take the required legal and deterrent action against the instigators of chaos and disorder in the University. In light of this situation, the University administration decided to suspend studies on Monday…”

Police sources informed PCHR’s fieldworker that an investigation was opened into the incident; and that the Police are pursuing the grenade thrower, who fled from the area and whose identity is known to the Police.

In light of these developments, PCHR:

  1. Condemns the regrettable clashes between students; and condemns all forms of violence inside universities.
  2. Calls upon the relevant authorities to take the necessary steps to prosecute the perpetrators of these clashes, which are a continuation of the security chaos plaguing the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
  3. Calls for respecting universities and educational freedom guaranteed by the law.