Israel demolishes donated solar panels in Palestinian village

Israel demolishes solar panels donated by Netherlands to Palestinian village
2 min read
27 August, 2017
Palestinians are without electricity after Israel abruptly confiscated solar panels from the village in the occupied West Bank.
Area C in Palestine [Getty]

Israel has prevented vital solar panels from operating in Palestinian villages in the occupied West Bank, a report has found.

Villagers in Jub al-Dib have been deprived of basic necessities since before the Israeli occupation began more than 50 years ago.

That began to change when the Netherlands donated solar panels to 27 households in Jub al-Dib last December, giving them electricity 24-hours a day.

Israeli forces moved in months later and demolished the equipment, Al Jazeera has reported, even after villagers splashed out on fridges and other electronic items.

Palestinian school children in the village were left to study outside in intense heat on Wednesday, after Israeli forces demolished their recently built school just hours before the start of the new academic year.

Israeli forces arrived at the West Bank village late on Tuesday and destroyed the EU-funded school building, local rights group B'Tselem reported.

The following day - which marked the start of the new school year - at least 80 Palestinian children were forced to study without shelter under the summer sun, the rights group added.

Jub al-Dib is in Area C - which covers over 60 percent of the West Bank - putting it under full Israeli civil and security control, though the Palestinian Authority (PA) remains responsibile for civilian services, such as medical and educational services for the Palestinian population.

In 2011, an EU report "proposed a rationale for EU interventions in Area C while shifting the general approach from a purely humanitarian response to longer-­term development".

The EU said it would encourage the PA to significantly expand its operational assistance to its people in Area C, in line with its own commitments to do so.

While the PA has responsibility for health and education for Palestinians in Area C, but can rarely get the necessary permits to build civilian infrastructure.