Takeaways from My Interaction with Former MWR Hassan Janabi

  • The only way to approach the issues of transboundary waters is through cooperation. 

Turkey

  • During his 2 years as MWR he visited Turkey exactly 6 times.
  • These visits have contributed to a higher level of understanding on the Turkish part of the water challenges facing Iraq. 
  • Ultimate goal of Iraq’s diplomatic efforts towards Turkey was, and still is, to achieve a long-term water sharing agreement that goes beyond technical cooperation. 
  • Equitable and reasonable utilisation of shared water is essential to maintain good economic relations with Turkey as well as peace and security in the region. 

Syria

  • Water relations with Syria have been good since the late 1980s when the two countries signed an agreement to share the incoming inflows from Turkey on the Euphrates at the Syrian border with Turkey (58% for Iraq and 42% for Syria). 

Iran

  • Water relations with Iran are “a bit” confusing and more work on the part of both sides is “seriously” required.
  • Although the Iraq-Iran bilateral economic, social and political relations are at their best, the water relation is still to be improved so Iraq’s rightful share of water could be guaranteed.