The Palestinian Water Authority (PWA) has accused Israel of affecting water access to parts of the central occupied West Bank due to the construction of parts of its illegal Separation Wall, the official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported today.
According to news site, the PWA said yesterday that a water pipeline near Al-Jib in the Jerusalem district was damaged months ago when Israeli authorities built sections of the Separation Wall in the area, adding that the pipeline had not been repaired since.
As a result, PWA Chairman, Mazen Ghneim, said the Ramallah district of the West Bank serviced by the pipeline has since suffered from water shortages, exacerbated during the hot summer months.
The PWA said that, in conjunction with the Jerusalem Water Undertaking (JWU), it had contacted both Israeli authorities and Israeli water company Mekorot in order to address the issue, adding that it had informed Israel of its willingness to repair the line, without receiving a response.
Ghneim held Israel responsible for any further consequences to the water crisis, and called on the international community to intervene to push Israel to resolve the situation.
A spokesperson for Israel’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), the military agency responsible for implementing Israeli government policies in the occupied Palestinian territory, told Ma’an that the damage incurred on the al-Jib pipeline was as “a result of aging and not as a result of the construction work on the security fence.”
The spokesperson added that Israeli authorities were planning on working building a new water pipeline in the area in coming weeks.