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Source: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
3 May 2007



PROGRAMME OF ASSISTANCE TO THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE


PRESS RELEASE
UNDP/PAPP Provides Essential Water Tanks to Answer Emergency Need


Jerusalem, May 03, 2007 - The Governor of Jericho and Ghore area, Dr. Sami Musallam, Chief Negotiator, Dr. Saeb Erikat, Deputy Assistant Administrator and Deputy Regional Director of UNDP/RBAS, Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, and UNDP Special Representative, Mr. Jens Toyberg-Frandzen, will attend a ceremony today in Jericho, to hand over 60 water tanks to representatives of Bedouin communities from the Jericho area.

In its continued effort to improve water supply in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), UNDP/PAPP, in close co-operation with the Chief Negotiator’s Office, launched a project, worth US$250,000, aims at providing emergency support to the Bedouin community in the Jericho region. This emergency initiative will improve the Bedouin’s access to water and storage capacity through the provision of water tanks and the extension of a water reservoir; provide them with a source of electricity; and facilitate school attendance through the provision of a mini bus to transport children to school.

“The UNDP views this project as an opportunity to assist in the development and service of a community who have sadly faced years of neglect and lack of support” said Mr. Jens Toyberg-Frandzen, the Special Representative of UNDP/PAPP.

The Ghore area, Western Jordan Valley including Jericho, hosts at least 5,000 Bedouins who live nomadic and semi-nomadic lifestyles and depend on around 55,000 heads of sheep and goats, much above the national average and even higher than the Bedouin average ownership of small ruminants.

“We are very grateful to the UNDP for answering this call and providing this urgently needed and crucial assistance to the Bedouins” said Dr. Saeb Erikat, Chief Negotiator. “Water is the spirit if life. Without adequate access to water, it is difficult for Bedouin households and their animals to survive”. added Erikat.

UNDP/PAPP has previously executed a US$1.5 million project to improve the livelihood of Bedouins in the West Bank through economic and technical assistance. The project was designed in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture and UNDP, with generous funding from the Government of Italy.


For further information, please contact:
In Jerusalem: Dania Darwish, Communications Officer, Tel. +972-2-6268229 – e-mail: dania.darwish@undp.org. In New York: Sausan Ghosheh Communication’s officer, Tel. +1 (212) 906-5382 – e-mail: sausan.ghosheh@undp.org. For more information on UNDP/PAPP see http://www.undp.ps .

UNDP is the UN’s global development network, advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. We are on the ground in 166 countries, working with them on their own solutions to global and national development challenges. As they develop local capacity, they draw on the people of UNDP and our wide range of partners.

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