Deliberate attacks on and destruction of water and sanitation infrastructure

al-haq  ewash

Israel’s violations of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
with regard to the human rights to water and sanitation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

September 2011

59. Since the outbreak of the second Intifada, and prior to “Operation Cast Lead”, Israeli military forces have been deliberately targeting water and sewage infrastructure throughout the Gaza Strip. The United Nations reported that between 2000 and 2006 Israeli forces destroyed 244 wells in the Gaza Strip, including two drinking water sources.46 Even after “Operation Cast Lead”, water and sanitation infrastructure is routinely destroyed by Israel. As recently as June 2011, a well in Beit Hanoun was bombed and destroyed by Israel forces. Similarly, several agricultural wells were destroyed in the summer of 2011. Roads, water supply lines and sanitation networks have been dug up using specially designed “back-hoe” tanks and bulldozers. Waste-water treatment plants in Gaza City and Rafah have been attacked or partially destroyed and water storage tanks on Palestinian roof tops as well as cisterns have been fired at. According to the then Special Rapporteur on the occupied Palestinian territory:

… between June and November 2006, [Israeli military] carried out 346 military incursions into different parts of Gaza, accompanied by persistent artillery shelling and air to surface missile attacks. Missiles, shells and bulldozers destroyed, or caused serious damage to, homes, schools, hospitals, mosques, public buildings, bridges, water pipelines and sewage networks.



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