S&Ds call for water cooperation in the Middle East
The S&D Group organised today in the European Parliament a public seminar on 'Saving the Jordan River - Water, environmental protection and trust-building in the Middle East'.
Following this seminar, the S&D MEP and vice-president for foreign affairs Victor Boştinaru said:
"Any successful peace effort between Israelis and Palestinians must be embedded in a regional approach and requires popular support on both sides.
"This underlines again the importance of trust-building between Israelis and Palestinians, which can be best achieved through joint cooperation projects addressing common challenges facing both populations, notably in the field of water management, together with other participants from neighbouring countries."
S&D MEP Julie Ward added:
"Water seems to be the most promising final status issue in the peace process where concrete results can be achieved, even in the short term, due to the technological breakthrough in the field of water desalination, which may be a game-changer in the region, transforming water management from a zero-sum game to a win-win situation. We encourage, therefore, both the Israeli government and the Palestinian authority to cooperate in the field of water management, to the benefit of both populations, and urge other governments in the region to join these projects.
"As joint Israeli-Palestinian development projects, open to other countries in the region, in the field of water cooperation and management in particular, are of crucial importance, we also urge the EU to support the implementation of the Eco Peace Middle East-led NGO master plan to rehabilitate the Jordan Valley, elaborated with the support of the EU's Sustainable Water Integrated Management (SWIM) programme."