Settlers are trying to spin water shortages as a problem that affects both Palestinians and Jews in the same manner. That couldn't be further from the truth. By Dror Etkes The recent reports on water crisis in Palestinian areas of the West Bank were accompanied by a story of another water shortage: this time in Israeli settlements. Let's get one thing straight — there has never been a "water shortage" in the settlements. When settlers open up the tap at home or in their garden, the amount and quality of the water is identical to that which comes out in…Read More... | 2 Comments
palestinian access to water
The municipal council of Qarawat Bani Hassan was not warned that their water supply was going to be nearly shut off for days, and attempts to get answers from Israel, through the Palestinian Authority, did not bear any fruit. Text and photos by: Ahmad al-Bazz / Activestills.org Last Wednesday, without any prior warning, the majority of houses in the West Bank village of Qarawat Bani Hassan, near Salfit, woke up to find that they had no running water. Municipal workers checked the village's main water valve, located on Road 505, a few meters from the illegal Israeli settlement outpost of…Read More... | 52 Comments
When Israel's national water company operates more than 40 wells in the West Bank, appropriates Palestinian water resources and controls the valves, is it any surprise that priority is given to Israeli settlements? By Stephanie Westbrook Qarawat Bani Zeid is a small Palestinian town of 3,500 north of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank. There are no Israeli settlements in the immediate vicinity. The route of Israel’s separation wall does not run through the area and Qarawat is in Area A — under the full control of the Palestinian Authority. And yet, Israel’s military occupation and discriminatory policies manage to cut into…Read More... | 22 Comments
A new report by Al-Shabaka, the Palestinian Policy Network details the damage that consecutive Israeli military assaults have caused to Gaza’s water systems, whereby 95 percent of the water consumed in the Strip for decades has been unfit for human consumption. By Sam Bahour Palestinians in Gaza are starting to wake up from the shell-shock of Israel’s 51-day Ramadan Massacre, which left over 2,131 Palestinians killed (of which more than 500 were children), over 10,000 injured (more than half of whom are estimated to be permanently handicapped), and scores of homes and businesses demolished. Reality is bleaker than ever before. Nothing of the underlying…Read More... | 32 Comments
The Israeli and Egyptian blockade on Gaza has led to ever-rising unemployment, construction skidding to a halt and water is becoming scarcer than ever. By Avi Blecherman Last week the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics published its most recent unemployment data in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The unemployment rate in Gaza jumped last quarter and now stands at 40.8 percent. That means that there are currently approximately 180,000 unemployed people in Gaza. That's a 30 percent jump from this time last year, and the highest since 2009. For the sake of comparison, the unemployment rate in the…Read More...
This week: Behind the wall in East Jerusalem, praying in the street outside Al-Aqsa, rude gestures from an Egged bus, fighters' remains return to Nablus, unions on the march in South Africa, African immigrants seek visas in Israel, youth arrested at Damascus Gate, remembering Rachel Corrie, and a Gaza doctor denied entryRead More...
The East Jerusalem neighborhoods of Ras Shehada, Ras Khamis, Dahyat A'salam and the Shuafat refugee camp, which are cut off from the rest of the city by the separation wall, have gone without running water since March 4. Text: Ryan Rodrick Beiler, Photos: Tali Mayer, Keren Manor, Shiraz Grinbaum / Activestills.org Locals say that Ras Shehada has had problems with water for more than two months, and Ras Khamis for more than 15 days, generally with low pressure and occasional cut-offs, and that this is the worst extended outage that these neighborhoods have ever experienced. With the rooftop reserve tanks now emptied, residents…Read More... | 4 Comments
Disruptions in Israeli water supplies often earns bold headlines in the Israeli media. But when Palestinian communities are cut off from the water supply for days or weeks on end, it doesn't make the news. And while the Israeli government often supplies Israeli settlements with an infrastructure that guarantees water access, Palestinians must store their water in large containers, due to frequent shortages. This is the story of Al-Ma'asara, a village near Bethlehem that sees its water supply cut off sporadically for extended periods of time, and the inability of the Palestinian Authority to do anything about it. .Read More... | 7 Comments
If President Obama plans on trying to kickstart the Israeli-Palestinian peace process during his visit this week, he should reframe the process. Tackling the toughest issues first, such as Jerusalem, has proven to only prolong the stalemate. Why not start with water? By Oded Eran and Gidon Bromberg The Israeli-Palestinian political process has been stalled for too long. It could soon be replaced by a third Intifada or a Palestinian version of the Arab Spring. If the renewed Obama Administration wants to try and avoid this possible turn of events, it has to change the paradigm that has guided all previous efforts…Read More... | 25 Comments
Israel controls the access to water from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. Its disproportionate allocation of water, the settlements' takeover of natural springs, and the prohibition against maintaining and constructing water cisterns in the West Bank without Israeli permits make water a sparse commodity for Palestinians. This illustration is the sixth in a series of infographics on Palestinian civilian life under occupation. By Michal Vexler >For the entire Visualizing Occupation series click here Sources: B'Tselem: The Shared Water Sources and the Control Over Them Amnesty International: Troubled Waters: Palestinians Denies Fair Access to Water United Nations OCHA: The Humanitarian Impact of the Takeover of Palestinian Water Springs…Read More... | 17 Comments
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