Teachers’ union president makes international appeal following Peshawar massacre
In an open letter to the global education community, the President of the Pakistan Teachers Organization’s Council, Khan Faraz, has called for support following the school attack that saw 132 children murdered by terrorists.
Yesterday, the Army Public School in Peshawar was attacked by terrorists who shot and killed a total of 145 people, 132 of them innocent students and nine staff members. More than 100 were injured. The attack was stopped by the Pakistan Army and commandos, who rescued 950 students and killed the terrorists.
The teachers, and especially the principal of the school, played a vital role by keeping the students locked in a room, which helped save as many lives as possible. Tragically, the staff members, including the principal, lost their own lives in the fight to rescue their students.
These terrorists are targeting the schools and teachers in an effort to stop the activity of education. But the spirit of students, teachers and parents are so high that they cannot be challenged or stopped. These cowardly terrorist acts only reaffirm the strength of our students and teachers to continue striving for education.
We appeal to all the teachers unions to stand with us and raise their voices against this coward terrorist activity and help the teachers of Pakistan to stand bravely against such threats. These terrorists are in fact not hitting a specific group of people or any specific race, but are against humanity and do not want to see the new generation to be educated. They just want to discourage parents from taking their children to school, but we will not let them win.
Today, the city of Peshawar, and almost every other city of Pakistan, has shut-down because of this violence. For the coming days, all business and social activities are suspended to condemn this terrorist attack. Every eye is tearful, and everyone is mourning the loss of our students and our teachers and staff members of the school. We appreciate the international community for standing with us following this tragic incident, and in raising its voice against the terrorists who will never succeed in their cruel mission against education and humanity.
We further appeal to the international community, and specifically the teachers’ community, to continue fighting for quality education and condemn these acts of violence targeting students, teachers and the education community at large. Regards,
Photographer: Asianet-Pakistan / Barcroft Indi
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