Armenia and Azerbaijan: The Waters of Joghaz Reservoir
Armenia and Azerbaijan: The Waters of Joghaz Reservoir
What to Watch at the UN General Assembly, plus Ukraine’s Kharkiv Offensive and the Armenia-Azerbaijan Border Clashes
What to Watch at the UN General Assembly, plus Ukraine’s Kharkiv Offensive and the Armenia-Azerbaijan Border Clashes

Armenia and Azerbaijan: The Waters of Joghaz Reservoir

Water was once abundant in the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, thanks to a network of reservoirs and irrigation pipes, but today shortages are chronic.

Water was once abundant in the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, thanks to a network of reservoirs and irrigation pipes, but today shortages are chronic. After the 1992-1994 war over Nagorno Karabakh, it became too dangerous to maintain the water supply system, which criss-crosses the front lines, and it fell into disrepair. Villagers began blocking supply channels to satisfy their own needs. Today, a mere handful of households draw their water from reservoirs fed by mountain rivers.

A more strategic approach to the water problem in the region would help, but ultimately neither side can resolve the water supply problems without the other. While decades of tensions have prevented cross-border cooperation, some tentative steps might serve the two nations’ interests. One might be the resumed use of the Joghaz reservoir. Built in the early 1970s, the Joghaz reservoir once supplied water to almost 30 Armenian and Azerbaijani villages. Now it services only a few nearby households. Trenches stretch along the shores, and soldiers face off mere metres from each other on the dam. Three derelict pumping stations need to be fixed in order to restore water supplies to adjacent Armenian and Azerbaijani villages. Engineering works are impossible, however, without a clear, detailed accord and a commitment from both sides.

Armenia and Azerbaijan: The Waters of Joghaz Reservoir

CRISISGROUP
Podcast / Global

What to Watch at the UN General Assembly, plus Ukraine’s Kharkiv Offensive and the Armenia-Azerbaijan Border Clashes

This week on Hold Your Fire! Richard Atwood talks to Crisis Group’s UN Director Richard Gowan about the state of the UN as world leaders meet for General Assembly week, and also catches up with Europe and Central Asia Program Director Olga Oliker about the latest from Ukraine and violence on the Armenia-Azerbaijan border.

World leaders are gathering this week in New York for UN General Assembly week, in an event that looks set to be overshadowed by Russia’s war in Ukraine and skyrocketing food and fuel prices. In a two-part episode, Richard talks first to Crisis Group’s Europe and Central Asia Program Director Olga Oliker to get the latest on Russia’s war in Ukraine, particularly how Ukrainian forces recaptured large chunks of Russian-held territory in the Kharkiv region in a matter of days, and what their advance might mean for the war. They also catch up on the recent clashes between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and whether the fallout from the Ukraine war might have emboldened Baku.

Richard then talks to Crisis Group’s UN Director Richard Gowan about what we should be watching during UN General Assembly week. They talk about UN Security Council politics over Ukraine and how the world body, including the Secretary-General, has responded to the crisis more broadly. They also discuss other crises the UN is dealing with, from peacekeepers struggling in parts of Africa to UN envoys’ efforts in the Middle East and the UN’s role in Afghanistan. Lastly, they look at prospects for UN reform, what appetite there is on the UN Security Council, particularly among its permanent five members, for change and – more broadly – what we can expect of the world body in an era of fraught geopolitics and resurgent nationalism.

Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

For more analysis ahead of the UN General Assembly’s 77th session, check out Crisis Group’s special briefing: Ten Challenges for the UN in 2022-2023.

Subscribe to Crisis Group’s Email Updates

Receive the best source of conflict analysis right in your inbox.