May 30, 2017

Israeli Water Exploitation in the Occupied West Bank

Water Memo CoverSummary: The Israeli monopoly over Palestinian water resources is sustained by hundreds of laws and regulations, military orders, restrictive bureaucracy and other limitations which has led to a profound structural imbalance between the two sides. Following the June 1967 War, the Israeli military occupation and the subsequent imbalance of power allowed Israel to design a framework that controls Palestinian day-to-day life, households and properties. Water is one of the most acute examples of this phenomenon.



Territorial divisions

The Oslo Accords divided the West Bank into three geographic areas: A, B and C. Area A is under Palestinian “National” Authority (PA) responsibility in terms of civil matters as well as security and mostly includes Palestinian cities such as Ramallah, Nablus, and Bethlehem. Palestinian villages and other rural areas are mostly located in Area B, which is under full civil PA control, but security responsibilities remain with the Israel Civil Administration. All other areas (around 60 % of the land) are defined as Area C, which includes Israeli settlements, roads to access settlements, buffer zones, strategic areas, most of Palestinian farmland and water. The security and civil jurisdiction in these areas is maintained by the Israeli military occupation. This territorial administration is relevant in terms of water management within the West Bank. In Areas A and B, springs and wells to access ground water are mainly under control of local Palestinian municipalities, as are utilities and private Palestinian owners. In Area C, the full control of water infrastructure (wells) and natural springs is under Israeli control. [...] Read the full CEPR MEMOpdf
Water tanks in HebronPalestinian water tanks hit by Jewish settlers sabotage in Hebron, West Bank. Source: Wikipedia.

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"My message to the international community is that our silence and complicity, especially on the situation in Gaza, shames us all"

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

The Council for European Palestinian Relations (CEPR) is an independent non-profit and non-partisan organisation registered in Belgium (BE 0828.629.725) with an office in London.

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We work to improve dialogue between Europe and the Arab world with the goal of restituting Palestinian rights according to international law within a just resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.