School shock at anti Semitism allegations

CLAIMS BY ISRAELI JOURNALIST

KEVIN HUGHES

COLAISTE Na Sceilge principal John O'Connor has expressed his shock at allegations of anti semitism levelled against his students by a high profile Israeli columnist.

Writing for The Jerusalem Post, Sarah Honig (right) claimed that students participating in a public fundraising event for Palestinians had made anti Jewish comments when she questioned them on her recent visit to Cahersiveen.

Ms Honig said she had been asked for a donation by three "boisterous" students from the school carrying large signs saying 'Free Palestine'.

In her article Ms Honig claims she had asked the students from whom Palestine was to be freed, to which they had replied "The Jews".

She further claimed that she had asked the pupils if they were aware that the money would fund terrorists but was told that "Jews are evil" as they had" crucified Our Lord".

The Jerusalem Post claims to be the world's top English-language daily newspaper covering Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World. The article is freely available on its widely viewed website and also features a picture of students taking part in the event. It has already attracted hundreds of online comments. In a statement to The Kerryman this week, Colaiste Na Sceilge principal John O'Connor has hit back at the criticisms, stating that the transition year students had "vehemently denied" the remarks attributed to them. He stated that the event was in fact Trocaire related and that the money was being raised to buy olive trees for displaced Palestinian families.

"The lesson content provided by Trocaire states clearly that Trocaire is neither pro Palestinian nor pro Israeli and having spoken to the teacher and students it is clear that the material was delivered in an unbiased manner," the principal continued.

Stating that the students were aware of world events and can draw their own conclusions, Mr O'Connor claimed that Ms Honig had referred to the "plethora of anti Jewish feeling" in the media.

The principal also criticised the website for publishing photographs of children in the article without parental consent, stating that it was irresponsible.

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