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Israel to double water supplied to Jordan

Israel's centrist opposition leader Yair Lapid delivers a statement to the press at the Knesset (Israeli parliament) in Jerusalem on May 31, 2021. - Lapid said "many obstacles" remain before a diverse coalition to oust long-serving right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can be agreed. (Photo by DEBBIE HILL / POOL / AFP) (Photo by DEBBIE HILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Israel's foreign minister Yair Lapid at the Knesset in Jerusalem on 31 May 2021 [DEBBIE HILL/POOL/AFP/Getty Images]

Israel will this year double its supply of water to Jordan, Reuters reported Israeli officials saying today after a meeting between the countries' foreign ministers, adding that Amman's exports to Palestinians in the occupied West Bank could also increase.

Yair Lapid, foreign minister in a cross-partisan coalition that ousted conservative Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government a month ago, said Israel would sell Jordan 50 million cubic metres of water this year.

An Israeli official said that would effectively double the supply for the year – measured between May 2021 and May 2022 – as around 50 million cubic metres was already being sold or given to Jordan. A Jordanian official said Israel gives the kingdom 30 million cubic metres annually under their 1994 peace treaty.

In a statement issued after he held a first meeting in Jordan with its Foreign Minister, Ayman Safadi, Lapid said the countries also agreed to explore increasing Jordan's exports to the West Bank to $700 million a year, from $160 million now.

"The Kingdom of Jordan is an important neighbour and partner," Lapid said. "We will broaden economic cooperation for the good of the two countries."

Israel has previously been accused of weaponising the water supplied to Jordan in order to persuade the government in Amman to back it's unilateral annexation of Palestinian land.

READ: Israel is prioritising its relations with Jordan

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IsraelJordanMiddle EastNewsPalestine
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