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IDF responds to reports of vandalism in Gaza school

After news agency AFP and stock photo agency Getty Images publish photos showing evidence of vandalism left behind in a school in the Gaza Strip which was used by IDF soldiers, the Israeli military responds by saying that while it “cannot determine if the photos are authentic,” the vandalism should be strongly condemned if they are.

“If soldiers were behind this serious incident, the IDF strongly condemns it. Vandalistic acts contradict the moral code of the Israel Defense Forces,” the military tells The Times of Israel.

The photos, which are said to have been taken by photographer Marco Longari in the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls after it was vacated by IDF soldiers who had used it as a base during Operation Protective Edge, show racist and anti-Hamas messages, as well as destruction and neglect.

Although the IDF says it cannot confirm its soldiers left the school in that condition, detailed military instructions in Hebrew, intricate chalk drawings of the insignia of various army units, and Stars of David rendered in chalk can be seen on the classroom boards alongside the hateful messages.

The messages, written in two languages, include “Fuck all the Arabs” (in English), “We will fuck you” (in Hebrew), “Fuck Hamas” (in English), “Revenge!” (in Hebrew), “No Hamas=Peace” (in English), and “You will be fucked here if you come again. Don’t forget it’s time for you to die” (in English).

A defaced portrait of late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is also found in one of the classrooms.

Leftover food seen in a classroom where a military crest and some graffiti in Hebrew are seen on a blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanun High school for girls, which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel's military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
Leftover food seen in a classroom where a military crest and some graffiti in Hebrew are seen on a blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanoun High school for girls, which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel’s military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
Profanities are seen written on blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanun High school for girls which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel's military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
Profanities are seen written on blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls, which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel’s military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian boy walks past writing on a wall allegedly left behind by Israeli soldiers who used the Beit Hanun High school for girls as an advanced base during its military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian boy walks past writing on a wall allegedly left behind by Israeli soldiers who used the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls as an advanced base during its military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
Some military instructions in Hebrew and a map of a school are seen on a blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanun High school for girls Tuesday, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
Some military instructions in Hebrew and a map of a school are seen on a blackboard after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls Tuesday, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A defaced portrait of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is held by a man in a classroom after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanun High school for girls which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel's military offensive against Hamas, on August 5, 2014 (Photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A defaced portrait of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is held by a man in a classroom after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls, which was reportedly used as an advanced base during Israel’s military offensive against Hamas, on August 5, 2014 (Photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian man stands near a blackboard scribbled with a Star of David, some military instructions in Hebrew and a map of a school after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanun High school for girls, Tuesday, August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian man stands near a blackboard scribbled with a Star of David, some military instructions in Hebrew and a map of a school after Israeli soldiers withdrew from the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls, Tuesday, August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian man walks past writing on a wall allegedly left behind by Israeli soldiers who used the Beit Hanun High school for girls as an advanced base during its military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
A Palestinian man walks past writing on a wall allegedly left behind by Israeli soldiers who used the Beit Hanoun High School for Girls as an advanced base during its military offensive against the Hamas-held Gaza Strip, on August 5, 2014. (photo credit: Marco Longari/AFP)
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