A new report published in time for World Water Day on Sunday by NGO Monitor reveals in depth how anti-Israel NGOs exploit the issue of water in their "political warfare campaigns against Israel."
The report, published by the Jerusalem-based research center under the title "Water Myths and Facts: NGOs and the Destructive Water Campaign Against Israel," lays bare the false accusations used to pressure corporations and foreign governments to boycott Mekorot, Israel's national water company.
"Water is a regional issue, and one that, with close cooperation between all parties, can ensure equitable, maximal access to clean and safe water and help create a more peaceful environment," said Prof. Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor. "Unfortunately, NGOs would rather politicized this issue and demonize Israel than improve Palestinian access to clean water."
NGO Monitor points out that EWASH, a coalition of NGOs and UN organizations, opposed a desalinization project in Gaza funded by the EU that would improve water supply, trying to justify their opposition by saying the project would "accommodate the occupation" and "legitimize Israeli actions."
A full 11 pieces of disinformation spread by NGOs regarding water are debunked by the report. The key culprits are NGOs Al Haq, Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), BADIL, Coalition of Women for Peace, Who Profits, and EWASH.
A central false claim by the anti-Israel NGOs is that Israel's limitation of goods into Gaza "prevents Gaza's children from having normal opportunities...to drink clean water."
Despite the charges, the major cause of Gaza's water shortage is in fact the poor maintenance of water and sewage within Gaza, by which the Hamas terrorist government has long siphoned off aid and funds to its terrorist infrastructure while neglecting necessary civilian infrastructures.
As a result, Gaza experiences losses of more than 40% in water, compared to just 3% in Israel and 33% in the Palestinian Authority (PA) run areas of Judea and Samaria.
Another central false claim is that Mekorot profits from "Israeli control over a Palestinian captive market under occupation."
But in 2013, Mekorot sold water to the PA and Gaza at a loss with a set price of 2.85 shekels per million cubic meters (MCM), whereas Israelis pay 8.89 shekels per MCM. In this way, the Israeli water company is in effect subsidizing the water supply to Palestinian Arabs.