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Occupation magazine - Settlements

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Demand that Quartet pressure Israeli Occupying Forces to revoke demolition order for electricity pylons
CPT Hebron
28 July 2009

On Tuesday, 28 July, members of the Israeli District Coordinating Office
(DCO) the branch of the Israeli army that administers civilian affairs
in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT)- issued a demolition order
to the newly constructed electricity pylons in the village of At-Tuwani,
located in the South Hebron hills.

On 19 March 2009, Tony Blair, special middle east envoy of the Quartet,
visited At-Tuwani (see AT-TUWANI: At-Tuwani hosts former U.K. Prime
Minister Tony Blair to address Israeli occupation and violence in the
southern West Bank). During his visit, Blair assured villagers that oral
permission had been given by the DCO to carry out the electricity
construction work.

On 25 May 2009, the DCO entered the village of At-Tuwani and ordered
villagers to halt construction work on new electricity pylons in the
village. No written orders were delivered. (see AT-TUWANI URGENT ACTION:
Demand that Israeli occupying forces allow At-Tuwani to bring electricity
into their village).

On 26 May 2009, Saber Hreini, head of the At-Tuwani Village Council, wrote
to Blair requesting written permission for the electricity work to

We hope that in your role as envoy for the Quartet, you can be of
assistance to us in contacting the Israeli government with the hopes of
procuring written permission for these projects. We fear without
written permission our problems will continue.

There was no response from Blair, as the representative of the Quartet, to
concerns of the villagers when the DCO ordered a halt to the construction
work on the electricity pylons.

Office of the Quartet
Political Advisor Reidun Otteroy
Telephone: +972 (0)2 633 3323
Email: and

The Quartet is the body consisting of representatives of the United
Nations, the United States, the European Union, and Russia responsible for
facilitating peace talks between the Israeli government and the
Palestinian Authority. Tony Blair is currently the special envoy for the
Quartet to the Middle East.

Currently At-Tuwani receives only four hours electricity a day, supplied
by a diesel generator operated and paid for by the villagers. The illegal
Israeli settlement and outposts of Maon, Havat Maon, and Avigail,
located within 2km of At-Tuwani, are supplied by electricity from the main
Israeli power grid.

Israel, as the occupying power*, is responsible for the general welfare of
the occupied Palestinian civilian population. Whilst providing electricity
and water to Israeli settlements and outposts in the occupied Palestinian
territories they fail to supply these basic services to Palestinian towns
and villages. In this most recent move they are now threatening to
demolish the villagers attempts to improve their living conditions.

* International Humanitarian law (1907 Hague Regulation and 1949 Fourth
Geneva Conventions) obliges the occupying power to ensure the welfare of
the occupied population.

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