More Bad News For Iran As Afghan Water Dispute Heats Up

As Iran’s domestic tensions in some regions are on the rise over water shortages and persistent drought, the country has another challenge to overcome: a dispute over transboundary waters with its South Asian neighbor, Afghanistan.

The good news is that there is an agreement over transboundary waters between the two countries—in a region where almost no agreements over water exist. The bad news: the agreement has been subject to interpretations, many of which are not accurate or constructive.

As Iran and Afghanistan accuse each other of taking more water from the Helmand River than originally defined by an existing agreement, the issue is becoming political in both countries. Afghans believe there is a run-off into Iran that needs to be controlled, while Iranians complain that they are deprived of their fair share, especially because of Afghan dam-building.

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