An Israeli plan to establish a waste water pipeline linking illegal settlements in the north of the occupied West Bank is intended to go through the city of Salfit, a Palestinian official revealed on Tuesday. Salfit's Governor, Abdullah Kameel, pointed out on Facebook that this will use "thousands" of dunams of Palestinian land.
"The neighbourhoods of Deir Istya, Wadi Jbara, Wadi al Oqda and Wadi Qana in the north of Salfit will all be affected," he warned. "Moreover, this dangerous project will cause a disastrous environmental crisis in the area. It's a new form of settlement expansion."
The head of the municipality in Deir Istya, Said Zaydan, explained that the pipeline will be 8 km long and will need a 30 metre-wide track of land along the whole route. "It will pollute the springs in Wadi Qana and a very large area of Palestinian farmland."
He added that his municipality is seeking a judicial order from the Israeli courts to stop the project. He is not optimistic. Israel's legal system rarely judges in favour of Palestinians, and almost always supports illegal settlers and settlements.
More than 650,000 Jewish settlers live in 130 settlement and outposts across the West Bank, which was occupied by Israel in 1967. According to international law, all Israeli settlements and settlers are illegal. Despite countless UN resolutions to this effect, nothing has been done to get Israel to withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories.