Israel and the Palestinian Authority have reached a historic deal regarding the sale of water to the PA. U.S. President Donald Trump’s Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt said he hopes the deal “will lead to economic improvement in the lives of the Palestinians.”
Jason Greenblatt, Tzachi Hanegbi and Mazen Ghuneim Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90
The first achievement in the renewed talks between Israel and the Palestinians under the auspices of the U.S. government was announced on Thursday. The two sides reached a historic deal regarding the sale of water to the Palestinian Authority as part of the Red Sea-Dead Sea Conveyance project, hoping that the agreement will help increase the level of trust between Israel and the Palestinians. For the past few days, the sides have been conducting serious negotiations regarding important matters such as the price of desalinated water.
According to the agreement, which was signed in the presence of U.S. President Donald Trump’s Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt, Israeli Minister of Regional Cooperation Tzachi Hanegbi and head of the Palestinian Water Authority Mazen Ghuneim, the Palestinians will receive 33 million cubic meters of water and energy at a reduced price in order to encourage the PA to increase its trade ties with Israel. Greenblatt said that he hopes that the deal “will lead to economic improvement in the lives of the Palestinians.”
Greenblatt Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90
The Red Sea-Dead Sea Conveyance project, which is led by Israel and Jordan and supported by other countries such as the U.S. and Japan, is the largest infrastructure initiative in the Middle East. As part of the project, water is moved from the Red Sea to the desalination plant in Aqaba and then released into the Dead Sea through pipes in order to increase the Dead Sea water level.
Over the past three years, no progress was made regarding the deal. The decision to sign the agreement comes after some of the supporting countries funded the Jordanian side of the project so that the Palestinians could also benefit from it. Greenblatt was asked to take part in the negotiations and after a few meetings between the sides, it was decided to include the Palestinians in the deal in order to relieve the water crisis in the West Bank.