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Procedure : 2010/2775(RSP)
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Texts tabled :

RC-B7-0484/2010

Debates :

PV 08/09/2010 - 13
CRE 08/09/2010 - 13

Votes :

PV 09/09/2010 - 5.4
Explanations of votes
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P7_TA(2010)0314

Texts adopted
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Thursday, 9 September 2010 - Strasbourg Final edition
Situation of the Jordan River with special regard to the Lower Jordan River area
P7_TA(2010)0314B7-0484, 0485, 0486, 0487 and 0488/2010

European Parliament resolution of 9 September 2010 on the situation of the Jordan River with special regard to the Lower Jordan River area

The European Parliament ,

–  having regard to its previous resolutions on the Middle East,

–  having regard to the 1994 Treaty of Peace between the State of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan,

–  having regard to the Joint Declaration issued by the Paris Summit for the Mediterranean on 13 July 2008,

–  having regard to the 1995 Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip (Oslo II Agreement), in particular Articles 12 and 40 of Annex III thereto,

–  having regard to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949,

–  having regard to the UNESCO Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage signed on 16 November 1972,

–  having regard to the recommendation on the situation in the Jordan Valley of the Ad Hoc Committee on Energy, Environment and Water of the Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly (EMPA), which was adopted at the Sixth Plenary Session of the EMPA held in Amman from 12 to 14 March 2010,

–  having regard to Rule 115(5) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the Jordan River, and the Lower Jordan River in particular, is a cultural landscape of universal significance which has great historic, symbolic, religious, environmental, agricultural and economic importance in the Middle East and beyond,

B.  whereas the Jordan River has been devastated by overexploitation, pollution, mismanagement and a lack of regional cooperation; whereas an estimated 98% of the river's fresh water resources have been diverted by Israel, Jordan and Syria, resulting in a 50% loss of biodiversity,

C.  whereas new waste-water treatment centres, which are designed to remove the pollutant effluents currently found in the Lower Jordan River, are due to begin operating in late 2011; whereas, if sound and sustainable water-management practices are not developed and fresh water resources are not allocated to the Lower Jordan River to coincide with the operation of these centres, long stretches of the river are likely to run dry by the end of 2011,

D.  whereas the rehabilitation of the Jordan River, and the Lower Jordan River area in particular, is of the greatest importance for the Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian local communities facing similar water challenges and offers tremendous economic and confidence-building benefits; whereas active cooperation among the governments, civil society organisations and local communities concerned can make a major contribution to regional peace-building efforts,

E.  whereas the Palestinian population in the West Bank faces serious water shortages; whereas Palestinian farmers are seriously affected by the lack of water for irrigation, which stems from the use of most of the water in question by Israel and by Israeli settlers in the West Bank; whereas the availability of sufficient water resources is essential to the viability of a future Palestinian State,

F.  whereas EU funding has been contributing to attempts to alleviate the environmental challenges facing the Lower Jordan River area,

1.  Draws attention to and expresses its concern at the devastation of the Jordan River, and the Lower Jordan River in particular;

2.  Calls on the authorities of all the riparian countries to cooperate and rehabilitate the Jordan River by drawing up and implementing policies which focus on achieving tangible results in the areas of domestic and agricultural water-demand management, water conservation and the management of sewage and agricultural and industrial effluents and on ensuring that an adequate quantity of fresh water flows into the Lower Jordan River;

3.  Welcomes the cooperation among Israeli, Jordanian and Palestinian local communities facing similar water challenges in the Lower Jordan River area; calls on Israel and Jordan fully to honour commitments made in their Treaty of Peace concerning the rehabilitation of the Jordan River;

4.  Welcomes the initiative by the Israeli Ministry of the Environment to draw up a master plan for landscape development in the Lower Jordan River area; urges the Jordanian Government and the Palestinian Authority to take similar initiatives with the aim of adopting master plans for the rehabilitation of the sections of the river that flow through their respective territories; stresses the importance of access to the river for all parties concerned and notes that such master plans could form the basis for a comprehensive regional plan to rehabilitate and protect the Lower Jordan River area;

5.  Welcomes the application of advanced water-management methods and technologies in Israel, and urges the fair use of these methods and the transfer of the technologies involved to all countries in the region; calls on the international community, including the European Union, to step up efforts to provide further financial and technical support for cooperative projects in this field;

6.  Calls on the governments of Israel and Jordan and the Palestinian Authority to work in a spirit of cooperation in order to save the Lower Jordan River, and urges them to establish, with the support of the European Union, a Jordan River Basin Commission, which would be open to other riparian countries;

7.  Calls on the Council, the Commission and EU Member States to encourage and support a comprehensive plan to rectify the devastation of the Jordan River and to continue to provide financial and technical support for the rehabilitation of the Jordan River, and the Lower Jordan River in particular, also in the framework of the Union for the Mediterranean;

8.  Stresses once again that the issue of water management, and particularly the fair distribution of water in keeping with the needs of all the people living in the region, is of the utmost importance for lasting peace and stability in the Middle East;

9.  Takes the view, at the same time, that a clear and specific reference to the rehabilitation process for this area should be included in the European Neighbourhood Policy Action Plans drawn up with Israel, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority; strongly urges the Commission to initiate a joint study on the Jordan River;

10.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Quartet Envoy to the Middle East, the Knesset and the Israeli Government, the Parliament and Government of Jordan, the Parliament and Government of Lebanon, the President of the Palestinian National Authority, the Palestinian Legislative Council and the Parliament and Government of Syria.

Last updated: 11 August 2011Legal notice