Jordanian company refuses to sell sand after discovering it is for gas pipeline with Israel

Video shows officials loading material back onto their trucks after finding out it is to be used in controversial energy scheme

Friday 27 July 2018 19:15 BST
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Jordanians refuse to work on job after finding out it is for gas pipeline with Israel

A Jordanian construction company has refused to sell its sand after discovering the material was to be used in building a gas pipeline linking the country with Israel.

Video footage shows workers delivering the sand, realising what it is to be used for, and then loading it back onto their own vehicles again before driving off.

“The sand delivery that was sold on the grounds that it was for a citizen has been retrieved,” Fuad al-Dwairi, head of Dwairi Contracting, says during the clip posted on Facebook.

Another official Iyad al-Dwairi can be heard adding: “We are retrieving the materials. We refuse to work with [Israel] or with anyone working with it and we are against any normalisation.”

The actions were applauded by parliamentarian Tarek Khoury, who said the company’s stance should inspire other Arabs to take similar action.

The controversial 40 mile pipeline is planned to deliver gas to Jordan – which has chronic energy shortages – from Israel. The country will pay $15bn for the natural reserve over a 15-year period beginning in 2020.

But the deal has led to widespread protests by campaigners who say the pipeline is “normalising” what they view as Israeli occupation in the Middle East.

On Wednesday, demonstrators rallied in Jordan’s second city Irbid calling for the deal to be scrapped. Many held placards declaring: “The enemy’s gas is the occupation.” Speakers argued that Jordan could resolve its own energy issues using solar and wind power, without relying on “stolen” energy, The Times of Israel reported.

Earlier this week, 18 members of Jordan’s parliament also demanded cancellation of the deal or its presentation to parliament to clarify the terms and conditions.

However, prime minister Omar Razzaz did not respond to the demands, according to the Jordanian magazine 7iber.

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