According to the Syrian news agency SANA, the ministers of water resources in Syria and Iraq met virtually today to discuss challenges related to the two countries’ water realities, including the negative effects of climate change and Turkey’s intransigence on reducing the rate of water release from the Euphrates and Tigris rivers.
In his remarks, Dr. Tammam Raad, Syria’s Minister of Water Resources, stressed the importance of joint action, information sharing, data exchange, technical and scientific communication, and everything else connected to water development for the benefit of both countries.
Iraqi Minister of Water Resources, Mahdi Rashid Al-Hamdani, expressed his country’s willingness to work with Syria to find a common solution to the two countries’ conditions and obstacles, as well as collaborate with Syrian experts to establish a research center in Baghdad and hold groundwater training courses for Syrian technicians. The Director of Iraq’s National Center for Water Management presented the evaluation of water quotas for Syria, Iraq, and Turkey, as well as the applicable rationale for setting these quotas.
Last July, Iraqi Minister Al-Hamdani traveled to Syria to discuss cooperation in the fields of water and water resources, as well as to unite their stances in international forums to defend and safeguard their water rights on the Euphrates and Tigris rivers. A virtual meeting between the two sides is planned for March 2021, as well as a visit by Minister Raad to Baghdad in March 2021 to participate in the first Baghdad International Water Conference with a technical delegation.