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Water As A Weapon — Weapons For Water

Following devastating news of poisoned children in Afghanistan, reporter Codi Yeager look at water security and conflicts around the globe.

Someone has been poisoning the well — literally. In Afghanistan last week, nearly 400 boys were sickened (80 of which were hospitalized) after drinking their school’s water, and foul play is suspected, CNN reported. It’s not the first time. In April, BBC reported that more than 100 girls were hospitalized after drinking poisoned water at a school in Afghanistan’s northern region.

While the possibility of attackers using open water sources as a weapon poses a significant security risk, diminishing water supplies are expected to create security threats on a global scale. My colleague, Brett Walton, wrote an in-depth analysis of a report released this spring by the U.S. State Department, which predicts that water scarcity could drive global conflict.

pacific institute interactive infographic world map water conflict global violence
Map courtesy of Pacific Institute
Click image to open the interactive world map showing water conflicts globally.

But it already has in some places, like Brazil, where an average of 1 person each day is dying due to water conflicts amid the country’s worst drought in 50 years, AFP reported. Other instances of water violence that Circle of Blue has reported include:

If you know of any other water conflicts happening, comment below or let me know via e-mail at codi@circleofblue.org so that we can continue to track this important issue.

–Codi Yeager
Circle of Blue reporter

Author: Codi Yeager-Kozacek  is a news correspondent for Circle of Blue based out of Hawaii. She co-writes The Stream, Circle of Blue’s daily digest of international water news trends. Her interests include food security, ecology and the Great Lakes.

Email: Codi Yeager-Kozacek  :: Follow on Twitter :: More Articles


1 Comment
  1. One of our readers passed along this link from CNN detailing an irrigation water conflict in Pakistan that killed 116 people in 2010: http://articles.cnn.com/2010-09-19/world/pakistan.water.dispute_1_tribal-region-water-dispute-mumtaz-zareen?_s=PM:WORLDv

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