Afghan Voice Agency (AVA): The President of Uzbekistan, Shaukat Mirziyoyev, said yesterday at the meeting of the Council of Heads of the founding countries of the International Rescue Fund in Dushanbe that the construction of the Ghoshtepe Canal will change the water regime of Central Asia.
The president of Uzbekistan has called the creation of a joint working group to examine all aspects of the construction of this channel with the presence of a representative from Afghanistan necessary to solve this concern.
Mirziyayev added: "You know very well that the Afghan side is actively building this channel. Its creation will fundamentally change the water system and balance in Central Asia. We suggest that the participation of Afghan representatives in regional dialogues on the joint use of water resources should be investigated.
In response to the President of Uzbekistan's concern about the consequences of the construction of the Ghoshtepe Canal on disrupting the water regime of Central Asia, Zabihullah Mujahid, the spokesman of the Islamic Emirate, told Salam Watandar that Afghanistan has not wasted the rights of any country and has only taken its share from the Amu Sea.
The spokesman of the Islamic Emirate adds: "This danger they feel is not appropriate. The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan does not want to destroy the rights of other nations and countries or to destroy their right to the Amu Sea, we understand that. We return only the share that Afghanistan owns. Ghoshtepe channel also has its own control.
Regarding Uzbekistan's proposal to form a joint working group to examine all aspects of the Ghoshtepe canal, Mujahid says that if its creation is beneficial to the region and Afghanistan, it will be accepted.
A number of international water law experts call the concern of Uzbekistan and the countries that share the water of the Amu Sea wrong and say that these countries have always ignored Afghanistan's water rights from the Amu Sea.
Najib Agha Fahim, a researcher in the field of water and environment, says that according to the agreements signed between the former Soviet Union and Afghanistan regarding the use of the Amu Sea, the two neighboring countries have equal rights in the types of water use of the Amu Sea.
He adds: "With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the constituent countries did not consider the share and role of Afghanistan in the contracts they signed for the use of Amu Sea water, even though Afghanistan accounts for 30 to 40 percent of Amu water. Ignoring customs and international laws, they unilaterally consumed the water of the Amu Sea.
On the other hand, Najibullah Sadid, another international water law expert, says that the Ghoshtepe Canal transfers only 8-12% of water from the Amur Sea to Afghanistan.
He adds: "The Ghosh Tepe Canal transfers between 8 and 12% of the water of the Amu Sea, while 27 decimal supplies 5% of the water of the Amu Sea. This is not a large amount that worries the Central Asian countries. It has created a misunderstanding, so correct information about this channel should be given to clear up the misunderstanding.
With 285 kilometers long, the Ghoshtepe canal is the largest water transfer project in Balkh, Jawzjan and Faryab. According to the Ministry of Economy, nearly 108 kilometers of it has been dug so far and about 9 million cubic meters of water has been stored in it.