US Axes Fulbrights for 8 Palestinians

Israel won't let the students leave Gaza to study abroad
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 30, 2008 6:17 AM CDT
US Axes Fulbrights for 8 Palestinians
Palestinians hold hands during a protest calling for the end to the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip.   (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)

Eight Palestinians have had their Fulbright scholarships taken away because Israel won't grant them visas to leave the Gaza Strip, reports the New York Times. Israel has isolated Gaza since Hamas took control of the territory last year. The State Department has allocated the prestigious scholarships to students the West Bank instead, to avoid losing them, the AP reports, and the Gaza students have been advised to apply again next year.

"If we are talking about peace and mutual understanding, it means investing in people who will later contribute to Palestinian society,” one of the disappointed students told the Times. “I am against Hamas. Their acts and policies are wrong. Israel talks about a Palestinian state. But who will build that state if we can get no training?” (Read more scholarship stories.)

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