File photo shows people fetch water from a hole in a riverbed near Doolow, a border town with Ethiopia, Somalia, March 20, 2017. (Xinhua/Sun Ruibo)
NAIROBI, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) -- The Horn of Africa region could become an epicenter of violent conflicts as climatic shocks intensify the scramble for grazing lands and water, the Executive Director of UN Environment Program (UNEP), Erik Solheim said.
Speaking during screening of a film called "A Climate for Conflict" in Nairobi on Wednesday night, Solheim noted that global warming will be the main driver of civil strife, terrorism and forced migration in the greater horn of African region.
"There is no denying that climate change will remain a big security challenge not only in Somalia but also in other Horn of African countries. Communities will continue fighting over over-stretched natural resources such as land, pasture and water," Solheim remarked.
The documentary, which was produced by two British filmmakers, sought to shed light on the devastating impact of rising temperatures on pastoralists and farmers inside the Horn of African State.
It was screened ahead of the UN global climate summit to be held in the German city of Bonn from Nov. 6 to 17 where governments will renew pledge to cut down on emission of gases responsible for rising temperatures.
The UNEP official said that the link between climate change and insecurity will be given due attention during the upcoming global climate talks.
"Climate change has not spared any nation and is one of the amplifiers of instability in many parts of the world. It has undermined peaceful co-existence among communities in the Horn of Africa," said Solheim.
He added that massive investments in climate change mitigation and adaptation is key to promote sustainable development and stability in East and Horn of African region.
Horn of African governments and their bilateral partners should revitalize action on environmental stresses that are fuelling conflicts, violent extremism and mass migration.
Rashid Abdi, the Horn of Africa Project Director at the International Crisis Group, said that climate change has worsened depletion of natural capital and animosity between herders and farmers in the region.
"Climatic stresses are creating conditions for armed conflicts and terrorism to thrive in this region," Abdi remarked adding that any attempts to promote conflict resolution in the Horn of Africa region should incorporate ecosystems restoration.