Ramallah: West Bank cities, towns and villages, particularly those in the south, are experiencing a serious water shortage due to Israeli practices which deny Palestinians access to their water which is fully controlled by Israel.

Governorates including Hebron, Bethlehem, Nablus, Jenin and the Jordan Valley areas issue weekly schedules for water cuts and residents are suffering, especially during the current heat wave in the region.

A senior official from the Hebron Governorate said that Israel fully controls the water and has begun to restrict electricity supply. Palestinians issue daily complaints to local authorities but to no avail.

“Restricting water and electricity is a form of racism,” Mustafa Al Barghouti, undersecretary of the Palestinian National Initiative said.

The Israeli regime dedicates 50 cubic metres of water to each Palestinian in the West Bank, while 2,400 cubic metres are dedicated to Israelis.

The Israeli regime has taken over 800 million cubic metres of water from the Palestinians and Palestinians have to buy 130 million cubic metres back from the Israeli occupation.

The regime charges Palestinians double the price whereas Israeli colonists’ average income is 26 times more than the average Palestinian.

According to the 1994 Oslo Accords signed between the Israelis and Palestinians, the Israeli regime fully controls water resources in the Palestinian territories.

Palestinian water needs should be brought to a special Israeli-Palestinian Water Needs Committee, which has not convened since 2000 (the breakout of the second Palestinian uprising).

Fifteen years later, the Israeli regime refuses to convene the committee.