Israeli Settlement Dumps Sewage in Beit Ommar Agricultural Land

22 April 2010

Overnight Wednesday, April 21, thousands of gallons of sewage have been deliberately pumped onto 75 dunums (25 acres) of vineyards by settlers from Gush Etzion. The farmers in Beit Ommar have just started picking vine leaves which, with the harvest of grapes, constitutes their total livelihood. The fetid water was pumped from a 100mm pipe which protrudes several metres through the boundary fence of Gush Etzion settlement; whoever opened the valve did so in full knowledge that it would flood dozens of fields contaminating the fruit and destroying the harvest.

This eco-terrorism has regularly been used against the farmers in the village. PSP has provided copies of the photographic evidence to the farmers and the Civic Authorities to support the filing of a complaint however, as previous incidents, it is highly unlikely they will get any financial recompense, admission of liability or apology from the illegal settlements or Israeli authorities.

Although this economic and environmental vandalism rarely makes news headlines it has a devastating impact not only on the income of extended families but also on the sustainability of agricultural communities. Farmland that is not cultivated for long periods is quickly confiscated by the Israeli State for illegal settlement expansion.