Middle East

Palestine criticizes Israel for systematically destroying environment

Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh underscores environmental problems created by Israel in Palestine at COP26

Gulsen Topcu   | 02.11.2021
Palestine criticizes Israel for systematically destroying environment

RAMALLAH, Palestine

Israel is systematically destroying the environment in Palestine, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said Monday at the 26th edition of the United Nations Climate Change Conference, or COP26, in Glasgow, Scotland.

In a statement, the Prime Ministry said Shtayyeh underscored the environmental problems created by Israel in Palestine.

Jewish settlements, quarries and landfills where chemical, electronic or solid waste is collected are among the most important factors causing environmental pollution in Palestine, Shtayyeh said, warning that the negative effects of these will double with climate change.

"Those who look at the modern map of Palestine see how the environment has been systematically destroyed," he said, noting that Israel has uprooted approximately 2.5 million trees in Palestine since 1967, 800,000 of which were olive trees.

Shtayyeh also said that Palestine's annual water budget is approximately 800 million cubic meters and Israel has “stolen” 600 million cubic meters of it, adding this is part of "Israel's systematic colonialist policies to turn our lands into desert and seize them."

The Dead Sea will dry up in 2044 as its resources are depleted and its minerals and salts are mined to serve Israeli industries, he underlined.

Palestine is struggling with climate change, he said, adding they signed the Paris Climate Agreement in 2016 and are one of the countries that have prepared a climate adaptation plan.

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