Left: The map before it was covered for the secretary general's visit to an UNRWA school in the Gaza Strip. The State of Israel does not appear on it. Right: The covered map of "Palestine" from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea (Arabi21, June 28, date).
1. On June 28, 2016, the UN secretary general went to the Gaza Strip for a visit lasting several hours. While there he was taken to a number of places, including UNRWA's al-Zeitun school in the Tel al-Hawa neighborhood of Gaza City.
2. During his visit a giant wall map of "Palestine," which completely ignored the existence of the State of Israel was, was covered. That was apparently done to keep from embarrassing him and UNRWA. However, there was nothing unusual about the map itself, because many such maps can be found throughout the Gaza Strip, Judea and Samariain administration buildings, schools, textbooks and in the media. The maps ignore the existence of the State of Israel, and many major Israeli cities do not appear.
3. The maps of "Palestine, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea" used in educating the Palestinian younger generation reinforce the narrative of denying the existence of the State of Israel. They also reinforce the narrative of the so-called "right of return" of the Palestinian refugees to the territory of the State of Israel. For example, at the head of the map covered for the visit of the UN secretary general the word "Return" appears, under which is written, "The return is a sacred right – it cannot be waived and [replaced by] settling [the refugees in the countries hosting them]." To the left of the map are pictures of a woman and child in traditional Palestinian clothing. The woman is giving the child a key, the symbol of the so-called "right of return."
"Educating" the younger generation with maps: A counsellor in a Hamas summer camp in the Gaza Strip points to a map of "Palestine" issued by Hamas which ignores the existence of the State of Israel (Filastin al-A'an, June 8, 2016). Important Israeli cities do not appear on the map. Jaffa, considered a "Palestinian city," replaces Tel Aviv, and Um-Khaled, an Arab village which no longer exists, replaces Netanya.
4. For reactions to the covering of the map, see the Appendix.
A study about the Palestinian educational system was carried out by IMPACT-se (Institute for Monitoring [global] Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education) in May 2016. On the one hand Israel is represented as an evil entity that should be destroyed. On the other, as a state, it does not appear on maps of "Palestine," where Palestine as an Arab state covers the entire geographical territory from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea (IMPACT-se.org website, May 2016).
A collection of map that ignore the existence of the State of Israel can be viewed at the display of captured Palestinian materials at the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center at Glilot.