The Iranian Department of the Environment accused Kabul of not honoring the water rights of the Helmand river.
Ali Salajegheh, the Vice President of Iran and Head of Iran's Department of Environment, in an interview with the Islamic Republic News Agency "IRNA" said that the Minister of Defense of Iran discussed the issue with the officials of the Islamic Emirate.
Selajegheh stated that his country is forced into making use of international resources in this regard.
"The president has issued a special order regarding our water rights from Helmand. Based on this, the president's special representative for Afghanistan affairs followed up on the issue. We also had meetings and requested that this issue be added to their main agenda of work. They started consultations, but unfortunately there is no government in Afghanistan to follow the issue,” Selajgeh said.
The Helmand River Treaty, according to some experts, does not grant Iran some water rights because this year is not one of the country's typical water years.
"In the months of August and September where we are, the amount of water rights is at its lowest level, because the water flow of the Helmand river is limited and at its lowest level,” said water expert Najib Agha Fahim.
However, Bilal Karimi, the deputy spokesman of the Islamic Emirate said that Kabul is committed to providing Iran with water rights from the Helmand river. But the drought this year has affected Iran's water rights.
"We are committed to Iran's water rights under the 1351 treaty, but this year there was a drought, and this is something that is beyond the ability of both sides,” he said.
The Helmand River Treaty was signed by the then-Prime Minister of Afghanistan Mohammad Musa Shafiq and his counterpart Abbas Hoveida, the then-Prime Minister of Iran in 1351.
According to the treaty, Afghanistan committed to sharing the water from the Helmand River with Iran and will supply 26 cubic meters of water per second, or 850 million cubic meters per annum.
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