Water Security in Times of Conflict: Perceptions and Experiences from Southeast Lebanon
Abstract: The connection between water and conflicts has a long-standing history in southeast Lebanon. It has created a perception of threat to the water security, which affect the development of the area. The aim of the research was to contribute to the under-researched discussion about how perceptions of water security are affected by conflicts. The research questions were concerned with how the Israeli occupation (1975-2000) and the war 2006 affect the current and future perceptions of water security and what is expected from the government and how its performance is perceived in terms of water security in times of conflict. The semi-structured interviews showed that the perception of Israel being a threat to water security is widespread despite few statements of testimony of real actions. This proves the power of perceptions. What is perceived as more important than Israel is the performance of the government, which is experienced as inadequate. The internal and the external situation mutually matter for the perceptions of water security and this need to be taken into account when working to improve the water security of the area. The interviews have showed that water security is connected to perceptions, which is important since perceptions guide actions.
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