As part of Turkey's efforts to stand in solidarity with Palestinians, who have been living under Israeli occupation for decades, the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) inaugurated another school in the West Bank city of Nablus on Sunday. The school was named after 81-year-old poet, Nuri Pakdil, who is known as "Kudüs Şairi," the Jerusalem Poet, for his love for the occupied holy city.
TİKA President Serdar Çam, Turkey's Consul-General for Jerusalem Mustafa Sarnıç and many Turkish and Palestinian journalists were present at the inauguration ceremony. Speaking to the press, Çam said that TİKA has so far opened 10 schools in Palestine and is planning to open at least one school a year to aid education there.
Palestinian Religious Endowments Minister Yousef Adeis met on Saturday with Sarnıç and Çam in the southern occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil, more commonly known as Hebron. Discussions during the meeting focused on the restoration of Al-Ibrahimi Mosque.
Adeis and the Turkish officials also discussed a proposal for sending Palestinian youths to Turkey to train in the maintenance of preserving heritage and historical sites. Adeis underlined the importance of Turkish assistance to Palestinian, the ministry said. It added that the minister also lauded Turkish support for Palestinian rights. Sarnıç, meanwhile, said Turkey is keen to support the Palestinian people and Islamic sites in Palestine. He said he was ready to cooperate with the Palestinian Religious Endowments Ministry in protecting holy sites in Palestine.
Revered by both Muslims and Jews, al-Khalil's Al-Ibrahimi Mosque complex, home to the Cave of the Patriarchs, is believed to mark the burial sites of the prophets Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Following the 1994 massacre of 29 Palestinian worshippers inside the mosque by Jewish extremist settler Baruch Goldstein, Israeli authorities kept Muslim and Jewish worshippers separated. The city is home to roughly 160,000 Palestinian Muslims and some 500 Jewish settlers. The latter live in a number of Jewish-only enclaves that are heavily guarded by Israeli troops.
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