Foreign, Peace and Security Policies

We want to let go of nourishing well-known historically established narratives about the relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan by deconstructing ‘regional tales’ and open new windows but re-imagining past, present and future differently. We therefore invite writers from Afghanistan and Pakistan to contribute with texts that are imaginative and reflect and develop own ideas how new forms of relationships could look like in the future. We are looking for short stories, essays, commentaries or poetry.

Keeping in view the long-time security-centred nature of Pakistan-Afghanistan relations, Kabul River Basin, a highly significant geographical and thematic area of concern, requires immediate attention of authorities. However, the issue remains virtually absent from the script of inter-state relations and diplomacy. The key proposition in this study is that if the transboundary basin management discourse about the Kabul River Basin can be changed from water-sharing to benefit-sharing across the water, food, and energy sectors, the social conditions and political will needed for long-term state-to-state engagement can be created without jeopardizing the lives and livelihoods of basin-dependent communities during the intervening period.

In terms of having water resources, Afghanistan has a considerable advantage in comparison to its neighbors. However, war and other various factors have limited the country’s ability to make use of these resources. Water infrastructure—including dams, water storage tanks, irrigation and water supply networks, hydrometric stations and metrology systems, and sewage and sanitation systems—is limited and inefficient.

Open call for applications: Vasl Artists' Collective in collaboration with Heinrich Boell Stiftung.

Residency dates: Thursday, April 6 - Friday, May 12, 2017

Eligibity Criteria: Artists from Afghanistan and Pakistan

Attempting to look beyond established parameters of perception about the other in neighborly relations, we are calling for abstracts for a research on the identification of the conflict of interests between relevant stakeholders in Afghanistan and Pakistan. What are the enhancing, what are the mitigating factors and who are the important actors, when it comes to the prevailing mistrust regarding trans-boundary waters and energy projects between the two countries? Deadline 17th July 2016.

Within the framework of the project “Regional Civil Society Engagement in Green Dialogs. Promoting Peace and Stability through Equitable Resource Management”, the offices of Heinrich Böll Stiftung in Pakistan and Afghanistan successfully conducted a Vision Workshop for a seed group of the Regional Green Dialogs Network. The workshop aimed at increasing mutual understanding and developing a joint vision and a plan for future action. Intellectuals, experts and activits from both countries (Pakistan and Afghanistan) participated in the event and reflected on how to promote peace and stability in the region through equitable natural resource management, especially looking into water and energy.

Since its formation in 2014 the National Unity Government of Afghanistan has in different occasions, expressed its commitment to share the benefits of Afghanistan’s geographic centrality through regional cooperation - particularly economic integration - with its neighbors and countries beyond the immediate neighborhood.

This paper highlights that with rising population, natural resources endowed on human kind are degrading and depreciating and would soon become extinct or unusable if not sustainably utilised. Impact of climate change serves as a catalyst to further amplify the process of ecological deterioration with anthropogenic activities.

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Foreign, Peace and Security Policies