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Education under attack


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Educational institutions are easy targets for armed groups wanting to inflict terror. This is evident in the recent massacre of over 140 students and school staff in a university in Kenya. A similar tragedy struck a school in Pakistan in 2015, and a university in Iraq in 2007. Remember these universities?

Published in: News & Politics
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Education under attack

  1. 1. Education underattack Bullet holes in a classroom wall at the Udaiyarkaddu School in northern Sri Lanka. Photo: Conor Ashleigh/AusAID
  2. 2. The massacre at Garissa University shocked the world, reminding us yet again of how vulnerable schools are to violence. But it is not the only tragedy that occurred at such scale in a decade. Photo: Andreas Levers
  3. 3. Over 140 students were killed in an attack al-Shabab claims is in retaliation to the Kenyan government’s involvement in driving the group out of Somalia. The terror group claims they only targeted non-Muslims, but this cannot be independently verified. The massacre is said to be the deadliest since the bombings at the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi in 1998. Photo: Andreas Levers Kenya April 2015, Garissa University College
  4. 4. SevengunmenaffiliatedwiththeTalibanwereabletoinfiltratetheArmyPublicSchoolinPeshawar, firing on schoolchildren and staff. The attack left more than 140 students and teaching staff dead. The Pakistani Taliban later claimed in a statement that the attack is in response to the Pakistani military’s offensive in North Waziristan. A number of students in the school are reportedly sons or daughters of army personnel. Photo: Andreas Levers Pakistan December 2014, Army Public School in Peshawar
  5. 5. A group of militants affiliated with Boko Haram broke into the school grounds at night and took with them over 200 schoolgirls who were scheduled to take their final exams. The event sparked a global campaign calling on the terror group to #bringbackthegirls. Some have reportedly escaped, but a huge number of the kidnapped students have yet to be located. Now there are fears they may have been killed as the Nigerian army advance into Boko Haram territories. Photo: Andreas Levers Nigeria April 2014, Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok
  6. 6. About 150 schoolgirls and teachers started feeling dizzy after reportedly inhaling toxic gas during class. No group claimed responsibility over the attack, but it is reportedly a common occurrence in the country. Authorities suspect the Taliban because of its conservative views, being against girls and women attending schools. Photo: Andreas Levers Afghanistan May 2013, Kharti Khorasan Girls’ High School in Mazar-i-Sharif
  7. 7. Campuses for girls have been targeted in separate attacks where students and teachers became ill after supposedly inhaling or consuming toxic substances at school. In Warza and Rostaq, water tanks were allegedly poisoned. In Bibi Haji, students and teachers reported inhaling poisonous gas in class. Many were hospitalized, but no one died from the incidents. Authorities again suspect the Taliban were behind these incidents. Photo: Andreas Levers Afghanistan April and May 2012, Warza High School in Khost, Bibi Haji school in Takhar, Rostaq district school
  8. 8. Over 60 students and teachers were killed and more than 100 hundred wounded in two coordinated attacks at two separate gates of the state-run university. Faculty and students were on their way home when the attack took place. It’s unclear who was behind the incident, but experts believe Sunni insurgents instigated it in retaliation for the execution of Saddam Hussein and his aides. Photo: Andreas Levers Iraq January 2007, Al-Mustansriya University in Baghdad
  9. 9. Want to read more education-related content? Visitwww.devex.comandfollowDevexonTwitter and Facebook. Bullet holes in a classroom wall at the Udaiyarkaddu School in northern Sri Lanka. Photo: Conor Ashleigh/AusAID