12:03 - 2023-10-22
The Ministry of Water Resources confirmed today, Sunday, that the water file has been transformed from diplomatic to sovereign under the direct supervision of Prime Minister Muhammad Shiaa Al-Sudani. While it announced a set of measures to confront water scarcity that includes a comprehensive plan, it indicated that it deals with the available water reserves wisely and objectively.
The ministry spokesman said, in a press interview: “The level of water levels in the Tigris and Euphrates is low, due to the lack of discharges coming into the two rivers,” noting that “the proportion of Iraq’s raw water revenues coming from Turkey, Iran, and Syria reaches more than 71%, which is Which greatly affected Iraq's revenues, and the way irrigation projects are operated.”
He added, "The water policies of neighboring countries and the method of operating major projects, such as large dams and major reclamation projects, have greatly affected Iraq's revenues and its natural entitlement to water."
Regarding the quantities of water in the dams, the Ministry’s spokesman explained that “Iraq’s strategic reserves are now at their lowest levels since the founding of the Iraqi state,” indicating that “the existing reserves now are between critical and worrying, and yet the Ministry is dealing with this existing reserve wisely and objectively.” ".
He explained that "the reason for the decline in storage is the lack of water revenues from neighboring countries, in addition to the lack of rainfall, whether in Iraq, Turkey, Syria or Iran, and the rise in temperatures, climate changes, and water consumption sometimes reaches a lot by the beneficiaries, especially in agriculture and other uses." Domestic and industrial,” stressing that “the Ministry will take effective measures to reduce water consumption and ensure the safety of dams from distribution and control.”
He continued, "Among the measures that the Ministry of Water Resources will take is implementing a comprehensive plan to maintain the distribution and control facilities and storage infrastructure, as well as dredging and disinfecting the main, subsidiary and side rivers, in addition to carrying out a comprehensive national campaign to remove violations, in coordination with the Judicial Council and the heroic security forces." And the Hashd forces of all kinds.”
The spokesman also revealed that “there is a development of the shift and marshaling system to ensure the delivery of water to the southern governorates, in addition to filing many lawsuits and numerous communications regarding reducing river pollutants.”
Regarding the existing lakes, the Ministry’s spokesman confirmed that “Iraq has two lakes, Al-Habbaniya and Al-Tharthar, which are natural lakes, used for storage, water balance, and absorbing flood waves, but Lake Al-Habbaniya currently has its levels reduced significantly, even though it is fed mainly by the Euphrates River.” And the revenues from the Euphrates River are also low,” stressing that “Iraq has so far received only less than 40 percent of its natural water entitlement.”
He pointed out that "Iraq is continuously losing 60 percent of its annual water entitlement, which has negatively affected water levels and storage lakes, whether they are at the front of dams or in natural storage lakes, and artificial storage lakes, such as the Tharthar and Habbaniyah lakes."
The ministry spokesman concluded, “The government, due to the vision of the Prime Minister, has transferred the water file from a diplomatic and technical file by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Water Resources, to a sovereign file directly supervised by the Prime Minister, as he made several visits to neighboring countries (Turkey, Iran, and Syria).” The main focus of these visits was Iraq’s water rights, and we hope for the best of strengthening direct negotiations with these countries individually, and the technical cadres affiliated with the Ministry are national and competent cadres, and they will do what they must to achieve integrated water management.”
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