Jordan BDS Statement on Proposed Gas Deal with Israel

9/15/2014 9:21:48 PM

Jordan BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel) expresses deep concern and opposition to the finalization of a recent gas deal between Jordan and Israel. The proposed deal comes in the aftermath of Israeli’s morally reprehensible attack on Gaza, which left over 2,100 Palestinians killed, and 11,000 injured, the vast majority of them civilians. This opposition is joined by the vast majority of the Jordanian public who share Jordan BDS principled objection to working with Israel. Most importantly, the gas-purchase agreement is not in Jordan’s long-term strategic interest. 
We question the wisdom of tying our energy future with a supplier who has failed consistently to adhere to international morality. Our opposition comes primarily out of fear for Jordan’s long-term strategic interests. 
Despite the economic necessity argument being used, the fact remains that there are major geopolitical implications for this deal that easily overshadow all potential economic benefits.
If the agreement is finalized, it would make Jordan dependent on Israel for its energy needs, and would grant immeasurable political and economic leverage to Israel over our country, depriving us much of our independence.
Moreover, Jordan will be paying for stolen natural resources, and the royalties and taxes Israel will collect from the sales proceeds will further fund its system of occupation, apartheid and exploitation of the Palestinian people and their resources. The agreement would also give Israel a chance to ease its regional and international isolation, especially after its latest aggression on the Palestinian people in Gaza.

Due to the above concerns, Jordan BDS calls on the government: 

a. NOT to proceed further and approve the natural gas agreement with Israel. We call on our government to reject an agreement that fails to meet Jordan’s long-term interests and poses a strategic threat to Jordan’s national security.

b. To diversify its energy supply by seeking energy from multiple energy sources particularly those presented by our Arab neighbors. We are sensitive to the existence of present-day political obstacles but are mindful that prevailing conditions may well change in the future. We believe that the economic or political price Jordan may have to pay for any these options pales next to entrusting Israel with our energy security, a major pillar of our national security.

c. To represent its people’s sentiments towards Israel which continues its oppressive occupation practices and constantly violates international / human right law. 

d. To invest in projects aimed at utilizing Jordan’s own natural resources to satisfy a good portion of the country’s energy needs. That includes supporting the local exploration of natural gas, expediting the extraction of shale oil from local reserves and putting an end to any derailment of alternative energy projects. 

e. Finally, to allow a transparent national debate on Jordan’s energy future with the participation of energy experts, lawmakers and government officials. 

The energy crisis in Jordan is real, and the options at hand are limited and come with all sorts of challenges and constraints. However, our people and future generations will be best served if all options were diligently explored, save the one that hands Israel a strategic victory and potentially puts our future under its mercy. 

Background: Jordan BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel) was established by a group of activists in the wake of the Israeli attack on Gaza. We are not affiliated with any political party or represent a certain religious ideology. Our values stem from our deep belief in freedom, justice, and equality. Our goal is to exert economic pressure on Israel through a series of campaigns to boycotts, divestments, and sanctions, and we welcome all Jordanian campaigns and efforts in that field.

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