By John Lee.
Iran has again has blocked the flow of water from the al-Wind [Wand, Alwand, Hulwan] river, in a move which has angered Iraqi farmers and citizens, according to PUKmedia.
Protesters are demanding that Iran release water into the river, saying their fertile land turning barren because of the repeated cuts and shortages in the river’s flow during recent years.
Dozens of Iraqi farmers blocked a border crossing with Iran recently in protest at its diversion of the river which helps to irrigate one of their country’s main agricultural regions.
Describing Diyala as “the breadbasket of Iraq”, the report says that agricultural lands in the Khanaqin area of the province have gone dry.
The water flowing into Iraq is estimated at 0.25 square meters per second that has massively damaged the environment, sheep and agricultural sector in the region, according to the measurements of Khanaqin chamber of water resources.
“With the coming of summer with a high temperature, Khanaqin needs 6-7 cubic meters per second of water to irrigate the agricultural lands, gardens and supplying drinking water”, Tahir Muhammad, head of Khanaqin water resources, told PUKmedia. Current flows are estimated at 0.25 cubic meters per second.
The 50-km-long tributary of al-Wind river flows from Iran and enters Iraq’s Diyala province through the Khanaqin city near the border, before it flows into Diyala tributary, one of the five major tributaries that flow into Tigris River. Khanaqin was a key military post in the 1980-1988 war between Iran and Iraq.
(Picture: River Wand at Khanaqin)