Hope for Resolving the Water Conflict in the Middle East
Video     Photos     Pakistan     World     Islam     Health     Crime     Islamic News     Business     Society     India     Travel     Middle East     Sport     sci/tech      Contact      RSS
Search

Saudi Arabia, Israel and America are misleading the world on the Iran nuclear deal

Fear and loathing returns for Quetta’s Hazara community

President Rouhani slams Trump’s remarks on Iran as pile of delusional claims

Paktia police chief among 32 killed in attacks on Afghan police centre

Indian role in Afghanistan: What is Pakistan’s paranoia?

Why is EU increasingly separating ways from Trump?

Is the party over?

Yemen President calls for international support

Egypt backtracks on opening Gaza border

Facebook rejected Saudi demand to remove Al-Jazeera page

US U-Turn: What made US to take policy turn on Islamabad?

ISIS Khorsan Province: another emerging giant?

ABNA | 4.5 Million Yemen school kids face uncertain future amid Saudi-led aggression

TASNIM | Tel Aviv behind Trump’s Anti-Iran Speech: US Analyst

SHAFAQNA | Media Blackout in Yemen – Journalist Support Committee denounces

IQNA | Plight of Myanmar Muslims Proof of West’s Double-Standards

The Fourth Imam, ‘Ali Ibn Al Husayn, Zainul Abedeen (as) .

Southern Yemen leader sees independence referendum, parliament body

Mayhem in Court: Is PML-N trying to alter the verdict?

Daesh used Raqqa as a base to plan attacks against the West.

Somalia's 'deadliest attack ever' kills 276, injures 300

Israeli minister says was misunderstood on war remarks with Iran

ISIS establishes training camp near Israeli border in Syria

Who altered the Khatm.e.Nabuwat clause?

Ending the Iran deal: Trump’s fatal mistake

Is Shahbaz Sharif trying to reconcile between establishment and Nawaz Sharif?

Show of restraint: How military poured cold water on PML-N’s whims?

Diplomacy with Pyongyang 'until the first bomb drops,' Tillerson vows

Report: Iraqi forces advance on Kurdish-held Kirkuk

Thanks to Pakistan: Will couple rescue mark a new beginning in ties with United States?

Bid to ‘fix’ Iran nuclear deal faces uphill climb in US Congress

US diplomats cast doubt on America’s ability to constrain Iran

Cracks in the party lines: Why PML-N is at the verge of disintegration?

Egypt becomes pawn in Trump’s N. Korea offensive

Karzai: Afghans Must Resist ‘US Agenda’

Jews against Shi’ite Community Center in London

The ‘Islamic Catalonia’!

Strategic Shift to Russia: Cost benefit analysis for Pakistan

Taking sides: PPP’s honeymoon with military establishment

Asteroid grazes past Earth in ‘critical’ rehearsal

Syria demands ‘immediate, unconditional’ pullout of Turkish troops from Idlib

Israeli study warns Netanyahu against ending Iran nuclear deal

US Daesh fighter in Syria poses dilemma for White House

The backdrop of Palestinian reconciliation

US rendezvous: Is Pakistan trying to woo back US?

Old tactics: PML-N repeats history by assailing the court

Warning to ISPR: Who is pulling Ahsan Iqbal’s strings?

Takfiri terrorism’s next station could be Southwest Asia

IB memo controversy: The motives behind fake letter

Pakistan’s path to sanity

Over 90% of Syrian territory free from Daesh: Russian daily

Trump refuses to certify Iran nuclear deal

Israeli report claimed Hawija was recaptured within deal with IS

The EU context for increasing financial aid to Palestine

Why Saudis welcome US sanctions on Hezbollah call for more?

‘UAE plans to invade Qatar using mercenaries’

IB memo controversy: The motives behind fake letter

Captain Safdar’s tirade: The game behind the curtains

Pulling out of Transit trade:  How India is manipulating ties with Afghanistan

PML-N's policy debacle: Rana Sanullah stirs new controversy on Ahmedis

Trump’s Iran plans pushing EU toward Russia, China: Germany

Rohingya Muslims not native to Myanmar: Army chief

IRNA | Speaker of Pakistan Balochistan Assembly underlines development of ties with Iran

MEHR | Trump to announce new Iran strategy Friday

IQNA | UN Report Details Brutal Myanmar Attempt to Drive Out Rohingya Muslims

ABNA | Saudi Arabia's next revolution: female taxi drivers

Arbaeen pilgrims can receive visas at airports, border crossings

How Israel takes advantage of Yemen crisis?

Sudanese call for Arab-Turkish-Iranian security treaty

Mysterious spike in radioactive particles across Europe baffles scientists

Fall in oil price pushes Abu Dhabi to sell bonds valued at $10bn

Sharif’s trial: The ticking clock for PML-N

Has Pakistan changed tack on the Haqqanis?

A well thought plan: Regaining lost religious vote through son in Law

Saudi Arabia’s outreach to Moscow underlines the loss of US influence

Why did General Rizwan Akhter took early retirment?

China scrambles fighter jets to deter US missile frigate

US continues efforts to demonize Hezbollah, says resistance movement official

Scientists discover a new brains vessels system

UK ‘preparing for war with North Korea’

Russian pundit: Iran primary target of KSA king’s visit to Russia

Australia Cricket Team’s Bus Attacked in India

Iraqi Sadr Movement threatens to storm parliament if electoral commission term extended

Uzair Baloch’s disclosures:  PPP in hot waters

Who is behind the secret death of the young leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party?

Afghanistan Airstrikes Hit Highest Point in Years

Ties with terrorists: How the IB was pressurized to declare the memo fake

Fingers towards CPEC: An Indian tongue in Trump’s mouth

Memos reveal torture of detainees at CIA black site in Afghanistan

Russia opposes US plans to label Iran’s IRGC as terrorist group

Allama Hassan Zafar refuses Minister to end Fill the Jails Movement

Opportunity in Crisis: How Maryam Nawaz is trying to cash corruption cases against her?

Several terrorists detained during Muharram: Iran Intelligence Minister

Rape, Sexual Violence Against Women used by ISIS to Lure Recruits, Report Claims

Cholera claims unborn Yemeni children amid Saudi aggression

An inevitable visit: Why Pakistan and Afghanistan should drive US out of the region?

Trump hints at military intervention against N Korea

Egypt seeks Israel’s permission for Hamas West Bank leaders to travel to Cairo

What did Saudi king look for in Russia visit?

Policy mess or what: Did Washington deliberately cornered Pakistan?

2016-08-22 23:38:37

Hope for Resolving the Water Conflict in the Middle East

victoria-nileSHAFAQNA – The availability of fresh water has direct impact on food and energy production, development of industry, and human survival. Fresh water resources are often unevenly divided and irregularly distributed throughout the regions of the world. As populations in the world continue to increase, particularly in water scarce regions, the potential increases for conflict to develop over competition for water. As such, concern over the dwindling water supplies in the Middle East has been labeled as the next source of conflict in the Middle East.

The severity of the water issue in the Middle East is a key strategic issue in understanding future security decisions within the region. Nations in the region have many ongoing disputes, but few are more basic and deep-rooted as the need for water. After all, the human body can survive without oil, but the soul requires the font of living waters for survival. An understanding of the magnitude and scope of the water issue will better prepare an analyst or decision-maker to anticipate events in the region.

Nations in the region share more political conflicts than just water, to include religious differences, ideological disputes, border disputes, and economic competition. These tend only to complicate the water problem further. Cooperation in the region is a very significant problem. Nations in the Middle East are constantly afraid of another gaining an advantage from an agreement of any type. As a result, Nations of the region are blinded by preoccupation with autonomy, power, and security.

mar

THE BLUE PEACE INITIATIVE

To address the ongoing water crisis in the Middle East, SFG has developed the Blue Peace approach that transforms trans-boundary water into an instrument for cooperation, with collaborative and sustainable strategies shared by riparian countries. The Blue Peace concept was conceived by Strategic Foresight Group in a project supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Political Directorate of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA), and Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and presented in the form of a report published in February 2011.

Blue Peace at the Nile Basin Initiative Secretariat in Entebbe, Uganda.

This initiative is supposed to create a complete framework for water cooperation covering the entire spectrum from cooperation at the political and diplomatic level to cooperation to address the plight of marginalized people in the Middle East. The exchange of experience takes place in various forms. An important component is “Learning Journeys” to successful river basin organizations. It is feasible to undertake such Learning Journeys only when important river basin organizations agree to host them.

Per se, the Rhine Hydrological Commission and Mekong River Commission have hosted in the past Learning Journeys for policy makers and media persons from the Middle East and the latest learning journey was hosted by the Nile River Basin in East Africa in August 2016, following the Learning Journey to Senegal River Basin, held in August 2015, this was a continuation of the ‘exchange of experience’ activities under the Blue Peace Initiative.

On August 8-10, 2016, members of the Blue Peace Middle East Community embarked on a learning journey to explore and understand cooperation in the Nile River Basin in East Africa. The delegation from the Middle East included senior policy makers, academic and technical experts and leading members of the Blue Peace Media Network.

Strategic Foresight Group organized the Learning Journey to Nile River Basin in coordination with the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI), headquartered in Entebbe in Uganda. The journey was conducted over a period of three days in Uganda during which the participants were able to appreciate the functioning of NBI and learn about its history and mandate. In addition, six other African River Basin representatives also participated in this learning journey which helped the Middle Eastern participants to get an overview of successful water cooperation across Africa. They included representatives of River Basin Organizations from Komati River, Gambia River, Congo River, Senegal River, Volta River, Orange-Senque Basin.

The most significant feature which the participants discovered in the case of NBI and also in the case of the other African River Basins was their emphasis on cooperation and the importance of a strong political will. The participants also noted that the riparian members of the Nile River were developing countries that were trying to find a common solution to water scarcity and economic development through cooperation over the common water resource they all shared.

NILE BASIN INITIATIVE

The Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) is an intergovernmental partnership of 10 Nile Basin countries, namely Burundi, DR Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, The Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. Eritrea participates as an observer.

For the first time in the Basin’s history, an all-inclusive basin-wide institution was established, on 22nd February, 1999, to provide a forum for consultation and coordination among the Basin States for the sustainable management and development of the shared Nile Basin water and related resources for win-win benefits.

Mr. John Rao Nyaoro, HSC, Executive Director, Nile Basin Initiative (right) and Dr. Sundeep Waslekar Director of the SFG (left)

 

The highest decision and policy-making body of NBI is the Nile Council of Ministers (Nile-COM), comprised of Ministers in charge of Water Affairs in each NBI Member State. The Nile-COM is supported by the Nile Technical Advisory Committee (Nile-TAC), comprised of 20 senior government officials, two from each of the Member States.

 

LEARNING JOURNEY TO UGANDA

The learning mission began with a presentation on the overview of Nile Basin Initiative (NBI), its structure and historical background by the Executive Director of the NBI, Dr. John Rao Nyaoro. The day was dedicated to understanding the socio-political background and the functioning of the NBI. A detailed historical background of the formation of NBI helped the participants better understand the context of cooperation.

Dr. Nyaoro also touched upon the Agreement on Declaration of Principles between the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia And The Republic of the Sudan on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam Project (GERDP) which was signed by the Heads of States on March 23, 2015. Later he emphasized the importance of cooperating and finding sustainable solutions together in order to fight the water scarcity in the basin. According to him, a balance can be struck once the cooperative mechanisms are in place.  The problems can be foreseen and the solutions can be found before the problems go out of hand, eventually leading to a basin-wide development and peace.

Presentation on Nile Basin Initiative

On the second day of the Learning Journey, in addition to NBI, six African River Basin Organizations shared their experiences with the Middle Eastern participants. As participants, we had the chance to interact with representatives of the seven major African River Basin Organizations at the same time. The representatives gave brief presentations on the history, functioning, achievements and challenges that their respective organizations face. The session was later followed by a detailed discussion on the Strategic Foresight Group’s report on “Water Cooperation Quotient” where the participants gave their suggestions and remarks which will prove instrumental in upgrading the quotient.

 

FIELD VISIT

As a part of the field visit the participants visited the Bujagali Hydropower Project built on the Victoria Nile in the town of Jinja, about 140 km east of Entebbe. It is a 250-megawatt power generating facility sponsored by the Industrial Promotion Services (Kenya) Limited and SG Bujagali Holdings Ltd, an affiliate of Sithe Global Power, LLC (USA). The main purpose of the project is to provide electricity to Uganda which suffers from power deficit and in turn to promote the socio-economic development of local residents.

Bujagali Hydropower Project built on the Victoria Nile

After the visit to the dam, the participants went on to see the source of the Nile River. It was an overwhelming experience for all the participants to be at the source of the world’s longest river from where it travels through eleven countries before it finally drains into the Mediterranean.

 

BLUE PEACE IN THE MIDDLE EAST

It is when riparian countries face problems such as prolonged drought, depletion of water resources and other factors that can produce competition between them, that institutionalized cooperation for the sustainable management of water resources is most required. The African River Basin Organizations came into existence in order to address the problems of natural disasters or acute underdevelopment which would potentially lead to conflict over resources. This is the situation in the Middle East today, where natural disasters such as drought and underdevelopment in some parts pose a challenge. It is precisely at this time that institutionalized cooperation is required.

The Nile Basin Initiative for instance has a long history of disagreements which have been gradually narrowed down to the minimum and now have the prospect of the countries reaching an amicable agreement in the near future. This has been possible because the NBI is available as a forum where the state parties can meet, irrespective of the extent to which they may agree with each other.

In the case of the Middle East, currently the Blue Peace Community brings together various stakeholders including individuals associated with the institutions of state. However, this is not an official forum of the governments in the region. It is important for the Middle East to take the next step to progress from the Blue Peace Community to a Cooperation Council of state parties to address the issues related to water and environment in the region.

By Marwa Osman for Shafaqna

 
Categories:   Middle East ،
From other agencies (RSS Reader)

Scorching sun

- brecorder

US stock market opens mixed

- worldbulletin.net