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Good morning, this is Kasmira, and today we continue with our water obsession, this time looking at solutions being developed in Geneva to help protect water-related infrastructure from coming under attack during armed conflicts.

photo journaliste

Kasmira Jefford


⚠️ Water under attack - and how to protect it

Photo article

A Yemeni boy carrying a jerrycan of water, 10 September 2021. Yemen’s crippling water shortage, the ongoing conflict, climate change impacts, and the country’s complex humanitarian crisis are all interlinked. (Credit: Keystone/EPA/Yahya Arhab)

Conflicts involving water are as old as civilization. Alexander the Great tore down Persian dams, Assyrian kings poisoned enemy wells, and Julius Caesar was fond of cutting off water supplies during sieges.

In present-day Syria, ​​water has been turned into a weapon of war with catastrophic repercussions for civilians, as Geneva Solutions’ reported in an earlier chapter of the series. Dwindling freshwater supplies are also fanning tensions and triggering conflicts in increasing parts of the world from India to the Sahel region of Africa.

Whether as a weapon, target, or as a casualty of war, figures show that violence associated with water has surged in the past decade, sparking calls for new rules or mechanisms to protect its vital infrastructure. Two years ago, a team of legal experts in Geneva set out to do just that, creating a set of principles drawing on international and human rights law.

Read more on Geneva Solutions

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