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TBC Staff

"Islamic school suspends teachers over student's hate-filled tale

'God bless you, your efforts are good,' instructor wrote on Ottawa boy's story celebrating violence, hatred against Jews"

(Excerpts) The cover page of the boy's story is illustrated with a burning Star of David beside a machine-gun and a Palestinian flag atop the Dome of the Rock, an ancient Muslim shrine in Jerusalem. The text next to the shrine reads: 'With the call of God is the Greatest, the flag of Zionism will fall and will be destroyed.'

Two teachers at the Abraar Islamic school in Ottawa were suspended yesterday pending an investigation into the encouragement or incitement of hatred against Jews expressed in a young student's violence-laden writing project.

The other teacher had written comments on the student's paper..."God bless you, your efforts are good," the teacher wrote on the title page. "The story of the hero Ahmed and the hero Salah is still alive. The end will be soon when God unites us all in Jerusalem to pray there."

On the margins inside the story, the teacher had written a note endorsing the boy's fantasy of a young Ahmed Yassin and his friend, Salah El-Dine, ambushing Israeli soldiers.

"Without thinking, Ahmed took his M16 machine-gun and threw the bombs, and he showered the Jews; this resulted in the killing of the soldiers," the boy's text reads. "Salah said: 'You killed them all.' Ahmed answered: 'Praise be to God.'"

"During my tenure at the Abraar school I have had the privilege to work with all the Abraar teaching staff and found them to be warm, caring and professional," Ms. Schoones said.

"As a teacher who has dealt with equity issues in the past, I have found the staff to have accepted and welcomed my presence. At no time during my tenure at the school have I seen any racial comments towards any culture. In fact I have found the staff to be interested in learning about all aspects of Canadian culture. I would consider it a shame if all the hard work put in by staff at the school was tarnished by this incident " (Juliet O'Neill, The Ottawa Citizen, Thursday, March 24, 2005).