Iraq wants treaty on sharing river waters

Published: Sunday 30 September 2007

West Asian conflict over water (Credit: DEFENSELINK)To avoid a possible regional war over water resources, Iraq has asked neighbouring countries for a treaty to share the Tigris and Euphrates river waters. The two rivers originate in Turkey, with Euphrates first flowing through Syria while the Tigris flows straight into Iraq. The two rivers converge in Iraq and are the country's main water sources.

The Iraqi government fears that it might not get a fair share of the river waters if it does not have sufficient information regarding the plans and projects of neighbouring countries. It is more worried about Turkey, which has had tussles over water with countries downstream. "I hope this issue does not fall prey to politics. Our river levels have plummeted and we need guarantees that projects in Turkey will not hit us further," says Iraq's water resources minister Abdul Latif Rasheed.

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