On World Water Day MPPM denounces shortages in OPT
The World Water Day is celebrated annually since 1993, under initiative of the United Nations, aiming to draw attention to the importance of drinking water and the need for sustainable management of water resources.
In many countries, appeals are made to the rational use of resources made available to their inhabitants. But in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, the population has a more pressing problem: pure and simple access to drinking water for daily consumption.
The United Nations Seminar on Assistance to the Palestinian People, held in Cairo on 6 and 7 February, reached these conclusions:
- Palestinians have access to only 10% of the capacity of the water system of the West Bank, while Israel has complete control over the aquifers of the region;
- Israel has continuously, over-exploited water causing the depletion of aquifers, and then selling it back to the Palestinians;
- Half of the Palestinian wells dried up in the last two decades;
- The Israelis consume seven times more water than the Palestinians, while these pay the water five times more expensive than the settlers;
- The Israeli settlements discharging annually, 40 million cubic meters of liquid and solid waste on Palestinian land, and daily 60 million liters of sewage, untreated or only partially treated, are discharged on land, at sea or on drinking water sources;
- The direct damage caused to the Palestinian economy by restrictions on access to water, including the higher price of water consumed, is estimated at 51.9 million dollars (0.6% of GDP);
- The indirect losses, which include, for example, agricultural production losses due to water shortages and health problems attributed to poor water quality is estimated at 1,900 million dollars (23.4% of GDP).
The water is just one of many silent weapons that Israel uses to strangle the weak Palestinian economy. But it is a much more effective than violent methods, because it affects an entire population and does not make headlines on newspapers or television news opening.
At that conference, the impact of occupation on the Palestinian economy in 2010 - which is considered to be undervalued - was estimated at 6,897 billion dollars, representing 84.9% of GDP!
For the end of the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories by Israel!
For a free, independent, viable and sovereign Palestinian state!
Quinta, 22 Março, 2012 - 00:00