World Water Day sees launch of First International Week To Boycott Mekorot
Campaigners from around the world are taking part in a week of action against Israeli national water company Mekorot, the main agent of Israeli water apartheid against Palestinians. The week launches on 22 March, World Water Day, and lasts until 30 March, when Palestinians mark Land Day in protest of Israeli systematic land and resource theft. The mobilizations come in response to a call from Palestinian organizations PENGON/Friends of the Earth Palestine, the Palestinian BDS National Committee and the Land Defense Coalition.
Denouncing Mekorot’s Water Apartheid
The Stop Mekorot campaign emerged out of citizen action in countries where Mekorot attempted to establish a presence through lucrative contracts often connected to water privatization drives. Mekorot claims to sell its "expertise" on water but hides its role in the persistent denial of water to Palestinians, including collusion with the Israeli military to destroy Palestinian water infrastructure, while providing unlimited amounts to Israelis. Mekorot's practices have been denounced by the UN and human rights groups yet governments have dealt with the company with a business as usual approach. However there are signs of change. In the Netherlands, Vitens the largest water supplier in the countries, ended an agreement with Mekorot just days after it signed an agreement citing Mekorot's involvement in Israel's military occupation of Palestinians. In Argentina campaigners were successful in suspending a major multi-million dollar government contract with Mekorot to build a wastewater treatment plant.
For basic 6 reasons to boycott Mekorot see: http://stopmekorot.org/6-
Stopping Mekorot’s water apartheid from going global
The Stop Mekorot campaign aims to denounce partnerships with Mekorot and hold it accountable for its complicity with violations of international law and the abuse of human rights of Palestinians. To launch the week on World Water Day, campaigners have organized:
- a Thunderclap on twitter to raise public awareness about Mekorot at 6 pm GMT. Over 250 people have signed up to the Thunderclap with a social reach of over 300 000.
- The makers of the series "Apartheid Adventures" have contributed with a YouTube video that satirizes Mekorot's claims vs the brutal reality of occupation, the video can be found here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?
- Across the world campaigners are organizing actions to mark the week:
- In Portugal, the first country to launch a campaign in 2009, activists will gather in Lisbon's main square to call for EPAL, Lisbon's water utility company, not to renew its MoU with Mekorot, up for renewal again in the summer. This follows efforts in the Portuguese parliament to denounce the contract this week. In Italy, a ‘water checkpoint’ will be presented with a street theatre performance in protest of the cooperation agreement signed between Rome's water company Acea and Mekorot.
- A series of events and discussions will be held in Argentina, the US, Greece, Uruguay.
- In a dozen countries in Europe, the Americas and Asia, media initiatives and awareness raising efforts are taking place.
The full calendar can be found on stopmekorot.org website.
To take part on the activities for the week see: http://stopmekorot.org/take-