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Ashraf Ghani’s ambitions to divert the Helmand River now serve his enemy, the Taliban: an International Law perspective

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Mohsen NagheebyORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by European Journal of International Law, 2022.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


One tragedy follows another in Afghanistan. Occurring amid many other dramatic events, the diversion of the Helmand (Hirmand) River, which flows through Afghanistan and Iran, by the Taliban in January 2022 was almost lost in the news. This deliberate act can cause huge economic losses, degrade entire ecosystems, and threaten the lives of those dependent upon its waters. The question is whether or not Afghanistan is legally permitted to call upon its sovereign right to divert the natural course of the Helmand River to the detriment of the livelihoods of people in downstream areas of the river in Iran and in Afghanistan and to the detriment of the ecosystem.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Nagheeby M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: EJIL:Talk!

Year: 2022

Print publication date: 13/07/2022

Online publication date: 13/07/2022

Acceptance date: 13/07/2022

Date deposited: 25/07/2022

Publisher: European Journal of International Law


ePrints DOI: 10.57711/xv9e-8y56