Hydropolitics in the Harirud/Tejen River Basin: Afganistan as a hydro-hegemon?

V. Thomas*, J.F. Warner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


This paper analyses how control over transboundary water is being achieved in the Harirud/Tejen River Basin, located in Afghanistan, Iran and Turkmenistan. It illustrates how a weaker country like Afghanistan compensates its structural power deficit by relying on international support and taking advantage of its neighbours’ foreign policy constraints. It also illustrates the importance of national power struggles to explain Afghanistan’s unilateral resource capture strategy and related tactics at the international level. Despite achieving greater control, Afghanistan does not fit the definition of hydro-hegemon and its resource capture strategy may only have served as an entry point towards future dialogue.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)593-613
JournalWater International
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Afghanistan
  • Harirud
  • hydro-hegemony
  • hydropolitics
  • Iran
  • transboundary


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