Human rights organizations to the Minister of Defense: Israel must immediately enable the renewal of water and electricity supply to the Gaza Strip in order to prevent humanitarian and environmental crisis המוקד להגנת הפרט
23.07.2014
Human rights organizations to the Minister of Defense: Israel must immediately enable the renewal of water and electricity supply to the Gaza Strip in order to prevent humanitarian and environmental crisis
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In view of reports according to which more than one million civilians in the Gaza Strip suffer from water shortage and lack of sanitation services and hundreds of thousands are completely disconnected from electricity, 12 human rights organizations which act in the Occupied Palestinian Territories – including HaMoked – applied today to the Minister of Defence.

The organizations note that during the fighting six of the ten high voltage cables in Israel which supply electricity to the Gaza Strip were damaged. In addition, electricity cables supplying power from the sole power plant in Gaza were damaged by the Israeli military bombings. As a result of the severe electricity shortage, the water infrastructures and the sewage systems do not function in full capacity. In addition, the infrastructure of the water system was damaged in the fighting. In the absence of any mechanism which can provide for the safety of the laborers on site, the damages are hardly being attended to and necessary maintenance works are not performed.

The organizations emphasize that Israel's continued control over the Gaza Strip imposes upon it a duty by virtue of humanitarian international law to provide for the needs of the civil population in the Gaza Strip. By causing damage to civilian infrastructures and by refraining from the repair thereof, Israel violates its legal duties.

In view of the above, the organizations request the Minister of the Defense to take the necessary measures to immediately repair the damage caused to the infrastructures on the Israeli side, and to enable, without delay, the supply of spare parts and fuels to the Gaza Strip in order to facilitate the proper operation of the civil infrastructures there. When the fighting subsides, all movement limitations into and out of the Gaza Strip should be lifted, so as to facilitate the repair and maintenance of the critical infrastructures.
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