On Friday, drinking water returned to a number of neighborhoods of the city of Hasakah, in northeastern Syria, after the restart of operations at the Alouk Station in Turkish-controlled city of Sere Kaniye’s (Ras al-Ain) countryside. Turkey had stopped the water pumping on the 21st of March.
According to the Water Directorate of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria, who tested the water before it was pumped into civilian homes, the results showed that the water is free of any impurities or diseases.
The water reached the southern neighborhoods of Hasakah (Tal Hajar, Nasira, Kallaseh, Musheirfa) and the Ghweran neighborhood, and the rest of the neighborhoods will be supplied tomorrow, Saturday, "pending the filling of reservoirs.”
Fran Equiza, UNICEF Representative in Syria, spoke earlier this month of the danger posed by cutting off water from the Alouk Water Plant by saying, "Disrupting the water station in the midst of efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus put children and their families at an unacceptable risk.”
Turkey is calling for the Autonomous Administration to supply the Sere Kaniye area, which is controlled by Turkish-backed armed opposition groups, with 30MW of electricity in exchange for permanent pumping of water from Alouk Plant, an amount which the Autonomous Administration describes as "significant", according to the co-chair of the Water Directorate, Sozdar Ahmad.
The Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates sent two letters of condemnation to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the President of the UN Security Council regarding "the Turkish regime's interruption of pumping of drinking water for the third consecutive day from the Alouk Station and its wells, intentionally and systematically, which led to the lack of drinking water for more than 600,000, most of whom women and children," Syrian official news agency SANA reported on Thursday.
This is not the first time that Turkey has stopped the pumping of water since it took control of the Alouk Station (5km east of Sere Kaniye) in October 2019. Moreover, Turkish forces cut off water to the areas of Hasakah and Tal Tamr.
In late February this year, Turkey stopped the pumping of water for ten days, then cut it off again from the 21st of March until late yesterday.