Erekat: Israel Grabbed 90% of Jordan Valley Land

Erekat: Israel Grabbed 90% of Jordan Valley Land

The Jordan Valley makes up around 30 per cent of the total occupied West Bank.

Israel has grabbed 90 per cent of Palestinian land in the Jordan Valley, Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee said on Monday.

Quoted by local media, Saeb Erekat made his statement during a press conference following a tour organized jointly by the Palestinian Ministry of Information and the PLO’s refugee department in the area.

“The biggest danger regarding the Jordan Valley and Israeli settlement is Israel’s attempt to extend its sovereignty over the Valley under security pretexts that are aimed at tightening restrictions on the Palestinians,” said Erekat.

The PLO official warned that Israel has held sway over an estimated $450m worth of property grabbed from local Palestinian residents.

He lashed out at Israel over its growing illegal settlements in the Jordan Valley and theft of Palestinian-owned water sources in partnership with international companies.

Erekat urged the UN Human Rights Council to come up with a database regarding Israeli land grab policies and control of the Jordan Valley “regardless of the amount of US pressure not to do so.”

The Jordan Valley, which stretches north of the Dead Sea and west of the occupied West Bank's borders with Jordan, constitutes around 30 per cent of the total occupied West Bank.

According to local and international NGOs, including Israeli watchdog B’Tselem, Israel denies Palestinians living in the Jordan Valley, as well as other areas in the West Bank, access to land, water and electricity, making living conditions tough.

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