Israel’s Ministry of Energy is considering not extending the water agreement with Jordan, due to anti-Israeli statements about the Gaza War heard from senior officials in the kingdom, led by Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi, Reshet Bet radio reported Thursday.
According to the current water agreement, Israel transfers 100 million cubic meters of water to Jordan each year, instead of the 50 million cubic meters of water that was stipulated in the 1994 peace agreement between the two countries. The decision to double the supply was followed by Israeli concerns that Jordan’s water crisis could result in severe political instability.
On Thursday morning, Israelis were treated to this image of a new gyro joint in Amman, Jordan’s capital, named, “October 7.”
Is this real? October 7 Shawarma restaurant… Shall we talk about Jew-hatred in the Arab world now maybe? pic.twitter.com/KwnjFvgq5K
— Jake Wallis Simons (@JakeWSimons) January 25, 2024
But never mind the hostility, on November 16, FM al-Safadi announced that Jordan canceled plans to sign a water-for-electricity agreement with Israel, which was the reason for Israel’s doubling the amount of water it gave Jordan.
Jordan was supposed to establish dedicated solar farms on its territory to sell electricity to Israel. But the FM told Al Jazeera, “We had a regional dialogue regarding regional projects. I think the war proved that all these will not be promoted.”
Queen Rania of Jordan on October 25, 2023, put down her cold glass of Israeli water to tell CNN, “When October 7 happened, the world immediately and unequivocally stood by Israel and its right to defend itself and condemned the attack that happened … but what we’re seeing in the last couple of weeks, we’re seeing silence in the world.”
Ayman al-Safadi on November 8, 2023, told Al Jazeera: “Hamas is an idea, and the idea never ends. Whoever wants a different situation must meet the needs and rights of the Palestinian people and achieve comprehensive peace. If the international community does not go in this direction and with a plan that achieves peace, a Palestinian state, and the rights of its people, we will return to war every 5 or 6 years, and no one will witness the stability and security that the whole world demands.”
Here’s what the FM said in the UN General Assembly on October 27, 2023:
Foreign Minister Ayman Al-Safadi’s speech at the United Nations resounds in various capitals of the world,the shocking Jordanian response to the lies of the occupation and the firm Jordanian position in lifting the injustice against the Palestinians and halting massacres in Gaza pic.twitter.com/jMv5duc7zw
— Mohammad Bani-Faris (@suleimanjojo) October 27, 2023
Good to know. I for one would rather have the gyro.
On October 25, 2023, five Jordanian and American scientists published a paper titled, “Water Resources in Jordan: A Review of Current Challenges and Future Opportunities.” I urge you to read it, here is the executive summary:
Jordan is facing significant challenges related to water scarcity, including overexploitation of groundwater, increasing demand, and wasteful practices. Despite efforts to manage water resources, inadequate planning has resulted in ongoing water security concerns and deteriorating water quantity and quality.
To address water stress, Jordan has implemented measures such as desalination, dam construction, and water conservation initiatives. However, water stress remains high, necessitating a comprehensive strategy that includes short-term demand-side interventions and long-term supply-side reforms.
Financial and governance challenges hinder the implementation of these measures, requiring private investment and coordination among stakeholders. This paper provides a comprehensive review of Jordan’s water resources, analyzing current trends, challenges, and opportunities. The aim is to offer insight into the current situation and propose sustainable management approaches. The findings will be valuable for policymakers, researchers, and stakeholders working towards addressing Jordan’s complex water challenges and securing a sustainable water future for its citizens.