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Israeli settlers control water resources in West Bank village

February 21, 2017 at 11:06 am

A Palestinian girl fills up bottles with spring water in the West Bank, 21 February 2017 [Nedal Eshtayah/Apaimages]

Palestinian sources warned on Monday of attempts by Israeli settlers to control water resources in the village of Deir Istya on the outskirts of the West Bank city of Salfit, Quds Press has reported.

“The Jewish settlers have been attempting to control water resources in the village and its surroundings,” village Councillor Nazmi Salman explained. “They have already seized Al-Ma’areed Well in the south of the village and destroyed another well used by local farmer Abdul-Jaber Aqel.” He pointed out that the illegal settlers have also installed pipelines to steal water from yet another well.

Furthermore, said Salman, the settlers built a number of facilities near one of the major wells in the village, where they swim inside the large pool and sometimes throw dirt inside it. “The Palestinian villagers have recently removed these facilities,” he told Quds Press.

Salman stressed that Salfit and its neighbouring villages have been facing attacks by settlers targeting water resources; there are 24 illegal settlements in the district, but only 18 Palestinian communities.

Israel controls water resources in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem where 600,000 illegal Jewish settlers are allocated more water than the three million indigenous Palestinians. This is, say local sources, a “flagrant violation” of international conventions and humanitarian law, the Geneva Conventions and article 55 of the Hague Statutes, all of which stipulate that access to fresh water is a basic right for every human being.