Confiscation of agricultural water tanks and irrigation tools

Confiscation of agricultural water tanks and irrigation tools
Photo 1: Khirebt Suba: Cultivated fields now threatened by drought
During the early hours of 17 August, 2009, the Israeli occupation authorities stormed the farms Ali Amer Ibrewish ‘Amayra and Fawaz Yunis ar Rujub in Suba hamlet, Hebron district and confiscated three water tanks.
The Suba hamlet is located about 15 km to the west of Hebron city. Its total land area is 2942 dunums of which 21.7 dunums as built up area. By the end of 2008, its population toll reached 200 people ( source: GIS unit at the Land Research Center).  The hamlet is rich of underground water resources because of its unique location at the western aquifer, but its population are deprived of taking advantage of this wealth due to Israeli restrictions.  See Map 1

In an interview with LRC field researcher, Mr. Ali ‘Amayra said the following: ‘ The Israeli occupation forces accompanied by a bulldozer, trucks and personnel from the so-called Israeli civil administration in the West Bank stormed my farm in the early morning hours of August 17 cutting off electricity from the irrigation pumps and confiscating two water tanks and two containers full of agricultural tools and material and loading them on the trucks. The operation came without any prior warning, knowing that I irrigate my plantations from wells dug in my lad by my self’.  
Photos 2+3: Khirbet Suba: Occupation forces during the operation
Ten dunums are threatened by drought
Following this aggression and confiscation of the irrigation equipment at the hands of the occupation authoritiesapproximately ten dunums are now threatened by drought and thirst and losses in agricultural produce are estimated at thousands of US dollars, not to mention losses in agricultural tools, material and fences estimated at ten thousands US  dollars.
Photos 4+5: Khirbet Suba: The effects of sabotage in the land of Mr. ‘Amayra and Mr. ar Rujub
Diversion of water to Israeli colonies
Ever since its occupation of the West Bank in 1967 the Israeli occupation authorities have been cutting off water from Palestinian areas and diverting it to flourishing Israeli colonies. This has been done through the hegemony and monopoly of the only water carrier in the country, the Israeli Mekharot company, which steals water of the West Bank and sells it back to Palestinians at high price.
The Israeli settlers’ consumption of water in the West Bank is five times bigger than Palestinians’ ( 60 liter/capita versus 300 liter/capita). In Hebron district, the most stricken areas are the ones to the west of Dura town and east of Yatta town due to the concentration of Israeli colonies in these two particular areas. At summer time, the problem becomes even worse as Mekharot reduces the quantities to the minimum level.
Perhaps the best example of this, Mr. Mohammed an Nawaj’a from Susiya village east of Yatta whose case represents the reality of thousands of Palestinians badly suffering from the lack of water for their domestic,  agricultural and livestock  purposes. Talking to LRC field researcher Mr.  Nawaj’a complained that the Israeli authorities do not allow him to get any cisterns dug up even for water harvesting in winter time for the use of his family, livestock and crops during the long summer dry season although he lives in a very dry climate at the edge of the desert. To get water he mainly depends on buying it at high price from mobile water tanks. 
Photo 6: Susiya village: Mr. an Nawaj’a dwelling and mobile water tank nearby.

Categories: Confiscation