FM Muttaqi and Iran’s envoy discuss political, economic issues

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Amir Khan Muttaqi, the foreign minister of the Islamic Emirate, and Hassan Kazemi Qomi, Iran’s ambassador and special representative for Afghanistan, met on Sunday to discuss issues of interest including the need for good relations, the foreign ministry said.

Hafiz Zia Ahmad, the Deputy Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Monday the two sides discussed political and economic issues between the two countries, emphasizing good neighborliness and mutual interests.

During the meeting Hassan Kazemi Qomi, Iran’s new ambassador in Kabul, said that considering the importance of water, efforts should be made to manage water in such a way that it is not wasted and Iran’s right to it is maintained.

Muttaqi also said that the Islamic Emirate is committed to respecting Iran’s water rights according to the 1351 treaty between the two countries.

Muttaqi has stated that with little rain over the past few months, there is a water shortage in the country, which is a real problem.

The issue of water has long been a problem for Iran, primarily around water from the Helmand River, which originates near Kabul and flows south-west for about 1,100 kilometers before emptying into Lake Hamun, located on the Afghan-Iranian border.

Afghan authorities have however constructed the Kamal Khal Dam along this river – which Iran has always opposed.

According to Iranian experts, Lake Hamun and dozens of wetlands fed by the Helmand River waters may dry up due to water intake at the Kamal Khan Dam.

In 1973, the two countries signed the Water Treaty of Helmand River protocol, which Iran regards as a basis for compliance by the other side. Based on the agreement, Afghanistan is committed to delivering an average of 820 million cubic meters of water per annum to Iran.—Ariana news