[anti-normalization] Jordan MPs walk out of session on Israel electricity-for-water deal

Middle East Monitor  /  December 9, 2021

 Jordanian MPs walked out of Parliament in protest against the signing of a water and energy deal with the occupation state of Israel.

Jordanian MPs walked out of Parliament yesterday in protest against the signing of a water and energy deal with the occupation state of Israel.



Jordanian MP Saleh al-Armouti called for those who signed the declaration of intent with Israel to leave the session, saying: “If they don’t leave, I will.”

However, Parliament Speaker Abdel Karim al-Daghmi considered Al-Armouti’s request a violation of the rules of the House of Representatives, forcing the member of parliament to walk out, with a number of his peers following suit.

Parliament had agreed to set a session to discuss the agreement of intent, however, after the walk-out, the speaker was forced to adjourn the session for half an hour because it had lost quorum. Last month, Jordan announced the signing of a declaration of intent for exchanging water for energy with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel.

Jordan’s Ministry of Water and Irrigation said the deal meant “entering the process of feasibility studies during the next year 2022, through which Jordan could obtain 200 million cubic meters of water annually.” However, it has been reported that in return for the water, the Jordanian desert would be used for solar power generation which would supply illegal Jewish-only settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Last month, Jordan signed an agreement with Israel to buy 50 million cubic meters of water from Tel Aviv — an additional amount to what was stipulated in the peace agreement signed between the two countries in 1994.

Jordan currently stands second in the list of the world’s water-poor countries, according to the global water index.

The latest deal has led to protests, with a sit-in held outside the government building yesterday during the session to discuss its terms.