Egypt has mentioned it’s keen to renew negotiations with Sudan and Ethiopia over the filling of a controversial mega-dam that has been a supply of stress between all three Nile basin nations.
“Egypt is always ready to enter into negotiations and participate in upcoming meetings … to reach a fair, balanced and comprehensive agreement,” the overseas ministry mentioned in a press release late on Thursday.
The ministry mentioned the settlement must keep in mind “Egypt’s water interests as well as those of Ethiopia and Sudan”.
Cairo’s thawing stance comes after Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok held a digital assembly together with his Ethiopian counterpart Abiy Ahmed earlier on Thursday to hammer out a deal.
The assembly comes after Addis Ababa mentioned it will not delay filling the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), which it started developing in 2011.
In April, Abiy proposed continuing with the “first stage filling” that might accumulate 18.four billion cubic metres of water within the dam’s reservoir over two years.
But each Egypt and Sudan fear the reservoir – which has a capability of 74 billion cubic metres – will entice their important water provides.
Hamdok and Abiy’s talks have been the primary after a diplomatic spat that broke out between Egypt and Ethiopia reached the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
Filling and working the dam “would jeopardise the water security, food security, and indeed, the very existence of more than 100 million Egyptians, who are entirely dependent on the Nile River for their livelihood,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry mentioned in a letter to the united states dated May 1.
In a response dated May 14, Ethiopian Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew accused Egypt of being obstructionist.
“Ethiopia does not have a legal obligation to seek the approval of Egypt to fill the dam,” Gedu mentioned.
Egypt desires Ethiopia to endorse a draft settlement rising from the talks earlier this 12 months facilitated by the US Treasury Department, which stepped in after Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi put in a request to ally US President Donald Trump.
But Ethiopia skipped the newest spherical of these talks and denies any deal was agreed upon.
Cairo’s closely worded letter to the united states raised the spectre of the opportunity of armed battle stemming from the dam impasse.
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