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11 Mich. J. Int'l L. 1400 (1989-1990)
The West Bank Aquifer and Conventions Regarding Laws of Belligerent Occupation

handle is hein.journals/mjil11 and id is 1410 raw text is: NOTE, THE WEST BANK AQUIFER AND
Jamal L. El-Hindi*
Although the recent unrest in Israel and the West Bank' periodi-
cally captures the world's attention, the underlying reasons for the
conflict rarely receive enough attention. While there has been a re-
newed emphasis on understanding the history of the Arab-Israeli dis-
pute, coverage of certain aspects is still lacking. One of these areas
involves the question of Palestinian and Israeli natural resources, most
of which are inextricably linked and which may serve either as obsta-
cles or pathways to peace. Water is the most crucial of these resources
and the West Bank aquifer has become the last and most important
viable water source in the region. While settlement of the conflict will
bring a day in which both parties realize that mutual respect and coop-
eration are the surest roots to stability, the issues surrounding Israel's
present use of the West Bank aquifer must be addressed to prepare for
that occasion. As a belligerent occupier of the region, Israel has cer-
tain concerns and rights regarding the exploitation of the aquifer.
These rights and concerns, however, are limited by the presently ac-
cepted international rules of belligerent occupation. •
This Note will provide an introductory analysis of the conventions
on belligerent occupation as they apply to the West Bank aquifer.
Part I provides a brief analysis of the current situation in the region.
Part II provides an overview of the relevant conventions on belligerent
occupation and then focuses on how these laws apply to underground
water resources in the West Bank. Finally, Part III outlines potential
developments for the maintenance of complicity with the developing
law of belligerent occupation, taking into account developments in in-
ternational water law.
Israel and the West Bank lie within a semi-arid region bordering
University of Michigan Law School, Class of 1990.
1. The topic of this note is the West Bank aquifer. By focusing on this region the author does
not intend to imply that similar issues addressed here do not arise in other Israeli occupied
territories, such as Gaza and the Golan Heights.


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