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Water and People: Accessibility, Distribution and Struggles - Case study in the Jordan Valley

“To exist is to resist”: this statement has become the key slogan for Palestinians that are living in the Jordan Valley to express their daily struggle in order to have access to water, land and human dignity. Water should be without boundaries, it should flow naturally and freely, but this vital resource is also becoming embedded in power relations and in forms of exploitation. Water control, its allocation and distribution, can be used as a means of oppression. In a situation of conflict, water and its management are strictly associated with authority and power. In Israel and Palestine, water is a politically contested resource.

This research was executed at the site during two months of field work in the West Bank. It analyzes and compares how a lack of access to and fair distribution of water (in terms of quantity and availability) for agricultural use are affecting two Palestinian villages, versus the situation for their two neighbors, Israeli settlements in a strategic area of the Jordan Valley. The Echelon of Rights Analysis developed by Rutgerd Boelens (2008) and the Lukes (1974) three dimensions of power were used to analyze how power relations within the two locations are affecting the access to water for its users. In addition, I collected and analyzed data on how water users (both Palestinian and Israeli) are dealing with this situation. Finally, I analyzed the strengths and the limits for establishing an IWRM plan in the area.

Mostra/Nascondi contenuto.
Final  Report       1     1 Introduction       1.1  Situation     Water  should  be   without  boundaries,  it  should  flow  so  naturally  and  freely,  but  this  vital   resource  can  also  become  embedded  in  power  relations  and  in  forms  of  exploitation.  Water  is   life  and  without  it  human  beings  would  risk  extinction.  Water  control,  its  allocation  and   distribution  can  be  used  both  as  a  turning  point  or  a  strong  means  of  oppression.  In  a   situation  of  conflict,  water  and  its  management  are  strictly  associated  with  authority  and   power  (Mollinga,  2008).  In  Israel  and  Palestine,  water  is  a  politically  conte sted  resource.   Water  and  its  access  for  Palestinians  are  part  of  a  daily  existence.     “To  exist  is  to  resist”:  this  statement  has  become  the  key  slogan  for  Palestinians  that  are  living   in  the  Jordan  Valley  to  express  their  daily  struggle  in  order  to  have  ac cess  to  water,  land  and   human  dignity.  Although  the  Oslo  II  agreement  and  Art.  40  state  the  recognition  by  Israel  of   the  right  to  water  for  Palestinians  in  the  West  Bank,  the  current  water  situation  as  reported   by   international   and   local   NGOs   and   organizat ions   seem   to   have   remained   unchanged   (Amnesty  International,  2009).     This  research  was  executed  in  the  field,  with  people  for  people.  It  has  the  aim  to  analyze  how   water   accessibility   and   distribution   (in   terms   of   quantity   availability)   for   agriculture   is   affecting  two  Palestinian  villages  in  a  strategic 1  area  of  the  Jordan  Valley  and  to  compare  these   interactions  with  two  of  its  neighbor’s  Israeli  settlements.  Moreover,  I  looked  at  how  power   relations   within   the   two   locations   are   affecting   the   access   to   wa ter   for   water   users.   In   addition,  I  collected  and  analyzed  data  on  how  water  users  (both  Palestinian  and  Israeli)  are   dealing  with  this  situation  of  water  related  issues.  Finally,  I  analyzed  the  strength  and  the   limits  to  establish  an  IWRM  in  the  area.     I   decided  to  do  my  research  thesis  on  this  particular  topic  because  I  had  the  opportunity  to  go   to  Palestine,  to  really  see  and  live  the  situation.  I  did  my  bachelor  thesis  and  internship  with   ACS 2 ,  an  Italian  Ngo  that  is  carrying  out  rural  development  projects  in  the  West  Bank  and  that   they  assisted  me  also  during  my  fieldwork  with  logistic  and  material  support.  What  really   touches  me  is  the  situation  of  injustice,  the  fact  that  in  every  conflict  the  consequences  are  for   civilians.  The   Palestinian  NGO  Friend  of  the  Earth  Middle  East,  without  whom  this  research   would  never  be  realized,  supported  me  with  the  collection  of  data  and  its  analysis.  Thanks  to   them,  I  had  the  opportunity  to  live  directly  in  the  location,  to  be  part  of  the  local  arena   and  to   study  how   the  current  water  situation  and  power  relations  are  affecting  people’s  livelihood   and  see  how  water  users  are  responding  to  them.     This  water  dispute  is  part  of  a  political  and  complex  situation  that  has  its  roots  in  the  history   of  the  XX  century  and  even   before.  This  is   closely  linked   to  the  national  and  cultural  identity  of                                                                                                                   1   Strategic   because  they  are  in  area  C,  under  the  Israeli  military  and  civil  control,  and  are  near  the  two  rural   agribusiness  settlements.   2   ACS:   an   Italian  NGO   that  has  a  major  aim  implement  project  in  order  to  promote   cooperation  and  solidarity   between  people  

Tesi di Master

Autore: Sara Datturi Contatta »

Composta da 104 pagine.

 

Questa tesi ha raggiunto 68 click dal 06/12/2013.

Disponibile in PDF, la consultazione è esclusivamente in formato digitale.