Afghan children carrying water from a well (epa)
March 12, 2007 -- The World Bank has urged governments in the Middle East and North Africa to speed up improvements to water resources.
In a report released on March 11, the World Bank said water availability per person in the region was set to drop by half by 2050.
The World Bank said that many countries in the area already faced full-blown crises in meeting water demand, and that was likely to worsen without reform.
An Increasingly Thirsty World
An Iraqi boy drinks from a waste-water reservoir near Baghdad (epa file photo)
A MATTER OF LIFE AND DEATH. Disputes about access to water are increasingly coming to the center of global attention, especially in China, India, and Central Asia. Writing about the 1967 Six Day War in his 2001 memoirs, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said that "while border disputes between Syria and ourselves were of great significance, the matter of water diversion was a stark issue of life and death." (more)