Head of Water Authority, Eng. Mazen Ghunaim, accompanied by the Governor of Salfit, Abdullah Kamil, and the Ambassador of the Republic of Germany to Palestine, Mr. Christian Clages, laid the foundation stone for the project of wastewater treatment plant for Salfit, which comes after 25 years of waiting as a result of the Israeli obstacles aimed at linking the project with the wastewater flowing from the Settlement of Ariel , which was categorically rejected by the Water Authority and insisting on refusing to link the settlement of Ariel, and obliging the Commit the Israeli side to solve the problem before starting this project to contribute to solving the problem of wastewater flowing in Wadi Al-Matwi as well as work to provide health and environmental protection, and protect springs in the region from the risk of wastewater contamination for the use of treated water in irrigation works for the farms, and the provision of additional water will have significant economic and agricultural returns.
In his speech, Minister Ghunaim explained that this project comes in the context of the Palestinian government's policy of supporting the strengthening of the resistance of citizens to Israeli occupation and settlement and its targeting of everything that is Palestinian, and reflects the arbitrary occupation measures against the right of the Palestinian people to life, as the project has faced the Israeli obstacles for 25 years ,this demonstrates the systematic practices of the water sector, in particular, targeting our water resources and any development projects to improve infrastructure services. He added that Salfit is facing an escalation in the pace of settlement, the apartheid wall, environmental pollution resulting from the waste of settlements, especially industrial zones, theft of thousands of agricultural dunums, groundwater sources, and the obliteration of its historical and religious features.
Eng. Ghunaim pointed out that today we are witnessing the beginning of the project through the signing of a financing agreement amounting to 7.5 million euros from the German Development Bank, Where the development of designs and studies, rehabilitation of sewage networks in many areas of the province ,and signing the agreement to be this project the first of its kind in the province and constitute a factor in supporting the agricultural sector through the provision of agricultural water quantities, especially in light of the lack of wells and the looting of the occupation of its water resources.
For his part, Governor Kamil said that the province is suffering from settlement and that the Israeli government puts it on the list of targeting, which calls for permanent intervention in order to support the steadfastness of citizens, as it is surrounded by 24 settlements and 7 new outposts with the aim of legalizing settlement and control of the land, so we will work on Implementing more projects to preserve the land and support the citizen.
For his turn, Director General of Local Government Salfit, Raed Muqbel, expressed his appreciation for the efforts of the Water Authority and the continued support of the German government in supporting this project, despite all the obstacles, and comes as a complement to a number of development projects implemented in the province, as water and sanitation projects always face many challenges that are overcome by adhering to national constants and attitudes.
The German ambassador spoke about the German government's support for the project, which began in the 1990s, and includes construction of a sewage network, rehabilitation, expansion of the water network and the rehabilitation of water springs that feed the region in addition to this plant and the financial support provided amounted to 2 million euros to complete the sewage line and the development and expansion of the network.