Iraq is highly dependent on water resources originating beyond its borders. Like the Diyala, which begins in Zagros mountains in eastern Iran — where it is called the Sirvan — and runs along the border between the two countries before crossing into Iraq to join the Tigris in Baghdad.
But 17 miles upstream, inside Iranian territory, the 169-meter (555-foot) Daryan Dam cuts the river's flow. It is the largest dam in an even larger national project. Iran's ongoing Tropical Water Project includes 14 dams with a capacity of 1.9 billion cubic meters and 150 kilometers of underground tunnels diverting waterways to rural areas in southern Iran.
With no power over what Iran does across the border, one strategy the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) can employ is, ironically, to build more dams.]
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