Iraqi schoolgirls return to class as battle against ISIS rages on

NTD Newsroom
By NTD Newsroom
April 17, 2017World News

One hundred fifty schoolgirls in Mosul, Iraq, are finally returning to class. Many of them  `haven’t seen a classroom in three years.

Their city was overtaken by ISIS terrorists in 2014. The terrorists forced the teachers to continue working but parents stopped their children from going to school. They did not want their children to be brainwashed with extremist ideology.

The terrorists stopped classes on subjects such as biology and English. When many students abandoned school, ISIS closed it down. They stripped the libraries of valuables and removed books they disapproved of.

“They were bad. They used to teach us about jihad (holy war), how to fight, and therefore we stopped coming to schools. We have not come to school for two and a half years. Our parents prevented us from coming to school,” said Manar Mahmoud, a 13-year-old Iraqi schoolgirl.

Iraqi forces have taken back the city from ISIS. Within earshot, the battle between the two sides continues. The children can hear the rattle of artillery fire. But they won’t let that stop them from getting their education.

“The situation was not good, but when they (Islamic State militants) left, the school became better. The situation is good now but the school still lacks many things including running water and electricity. However, we keep coming to school,” said Mahmoud. “We want to learn, we do not want to be ignorant.”

Teachers are quickly restarting classes with a new shipment of books and new curriculum. They are working for free as the government has not resumed paying salaries.

“Pupils stopped coming because the curricula were hateful and the methods they (terrorists) used were very cruel and tough,” said a teacher who requested to be anonymous. “God willing, we will help them overcome the difficult circumstances that they had lived through and forget what they have lived through, and help them forget Daesh’s (ISIS) terrorist ideology, cruelty and killings. God willing, we will try to help the children and the pupils forget the suffering they had experienced.”

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