Israel drilling into West Bank for oil

Israel drilling into West Bank for oil
2.5 5

Published November 3rd, 2013 - 13:50 GMT via

Rate Article:

PRINT Send Mail
comment (0)
Israeli regime may soon be joining the club of oil-producers, as it plans to dig for oil in the West Bank.
Israeli regime may soon be joining the club of oil-producers, as it plans to dig for oil in the West Bank.
Follow >
Click here to add Al-Alam as an alert
Click here to add Ashraf Khatib as an alert
Ashraf Khatib
Click here to add Dror Etkes as an alert
Dror Etkes
Click here to add Friends of the Earth as an alert
Friends of the Earth
Click here to add Gidon Bromberg as an alert
Gidon Bromberg
Click here to add Givot Olam as an alert
Givot Olam
Click here to add Jamil al-Mutaur as an alert
Jamil al-Mutaur
Click here to add Oslo as an alert
Click here to add Palestinian Environmental Quality Authority as an alert
Click here to add Ramallah as an alert
Click here to add Rantis as an alert
Click here to add Rosh Haayin as an alert
Rosh Haayin
Click here to add World Bank as an alert
World Bank

Shares in Givot Olam, an Israeli oil exploration company, rallied on reports that it had located much larger oil reserves at its Meged 5 site than previously estimated.

The company, which says it has already sold $40mln worth of oil since the Meged field went operational in 2011, now believes that the well is sitting on exploitable reserves of as much as 3.53bln barrels - about a seventh of Qatar's proven oil reserves.

According to Palestinian officials, Israel has moved the course of its concrete and steel separation wall - claiming security - to provide Givot Olam with unfettered access to the site, between the Israeli town of Rosh Haayin and the Palestinian village of Rantis, Northwest of Ramallah, Al-Alam reported.

Dror Etkes, an Israeli researcher who tracks Israeli activities in the West Bank, said the Meged site was "a few dozen meters" inside the Green Line.

But what seems clear is that the oil field extends over a very large area, with much of the reserves believed to lie under Palestinian territory in the West Bank.

According to the Oslo accords, Israel is obligated to coordinate any exploration for natural resources in shared territory with the Palestinian Authority (PA), and reach agreements on how to divide the benefits.

Ashraf Khatib, an official at the PA's negotiations support unit, said the Meged oilfield was part of Israel's general "theft of Palestinian national resources".

"The problem for us is that the occupation is not just about settlements and land confiscation. Israel is also massively profiting from exploiting our resources. There's lots of money in it for Israel, which is why the occupation has become so prolonged," he said.

Last year, when Meged 5's reserves were believed to be 1.5bln barrels - less than half the current estimates - Jamil al-Mutaur, deputy chairman of the Palestinian Environmental Quality Authority, threatened to sue Israel in the international courts for its unilateral operations at Meged.

Gidon Bromberg, director of environmental group Friends of the Earth Middle-East, said his group would submit questions to the Israeli regime about Meged 5.

"If there are reserves of oil under the occupied territories, then absolutely Israel must talk to the Palestinian Authority about any exploration being undertaken to extract them," he said.

The expectation of a dramatic increase in future profits for Israel from drilling at Meged 5 comes shortly after the World Bank issued a report arguing that Israel was destroying any hope that a future Palestinian state could be economically viable.



©2013 Fars News Agency. All rights reserved

Add a new comment