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Tension in Poland-Israel relations over destruction of cisterns in the occupied West Bank

January 30, 2014 at 11:28 pm

Reports in the Israeli media have revealed growing tension in relations between Israel and Poland. Haaretz reported on Wednesday that Poland’s deputy foreign minister refused to meet with the Israeli ambassador in Warsaw after Israel’s Civil Administration in the occupied West Bank destroyed water cisterns which had been repaired by a Polish group for use by Palestinians. The relationship between the two countries is also described as “very tense” due to Israel’s settlement policy, which takes ever more Palestinian land almost daily.

When summoned to the Foreign Ministry in Warsaw, the Israeli ambassador promised that cisterns will not be destroyed in the future on the condition that an official permit is requested from the Israeli government before any work is carried out on them. This condition was rejected by the Poles, who said that they will not ask for Israel’s permission to repair Palestinian infrastructure on Palestinian land.

Haaretz added that the Polish government will raise the issue of Israel’s destruction of the cisterns at the next available session of the European Union.