Sunday, April 24, 2016

Somalia President scotches claims over Shabelle River closure

: "Somalia President scotches claims over Shabelle River closure

MOGADISHU, Somalia-Ethiopian authorities cannot stop the flow of Shabelle river water into downstream Somalia, President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud told VOA Somali Service. 

Mohamud made remarks in Washington after reports of large scale water diversion in the Somali region of Ethiopia surfaced.  

Somali President added that it is not possible for Ethiopia to make overutilization upstream at the expense of Somalia in line with international water principles. 

Last month, Shabelle River that is dependent on runoffs of Ethiopian highlands dried up, and prompted debates on whether water resource projects in Ethiopia could be the reason.  

Somalia will be investigating the matter, Mohamud disclosed.  

Thousands of farmers in central and southern Somalia use Shabelle and Juba Rivers water for irrigation.  

El Nino-induced drought and severe water shortages have affected considerable swathes in Somalia for months.