FILE PHOTO: The Blue Nile flows into Ethiopia's Great Renaissance Dam in Guba Woreda- Reuters
CAIRO - 16 June 2020: Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed el Tayyeb urged the international community and the African, Arab and Islamic worlds to shoulder their responsibilities in supporting Egypt and Sudan to maintain their water rights in the River Nile.
In a statement, Tayyeb asserted that water comes on top of the necessary resources that are considered are public property.
Tayyeb appreciated the diplomatic efforts exerted by Egypt and Sudan and strenuous efforts to find solutions that maintain their rights in investing the natural resources without harming the rights of others by any means.
Ethiopia conducted its first filling in July 2020 with 5 billion cubic meters. The total capacity of the reservoir is 74 billion cubic meters to be filled over several years [the years number is still one of the disagreements between the three countries].
Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan are at loggerheads over the $4-billion dam; Cairo voiced concern over its water share [55.5 billion cubic meters] after Ethiopia started building the dam on the Blue Nile in May 2011.
In 2015, the three countries signed the Declaration of Principles, per which the downstream countries [Egypt and Sudan] should not be negatively affected by the construction of the dam.
In March 2021, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi stated, “No one can take a drop of water from Egypt... If it happens, there will be inconceivable instability in the region that no one could imagine. This is not a threat.”
Sudan, as well has warned more than once of filling the GERD before reaching a legal binding agreement.
Ethiopia, on the other side affirms that the second filling will be conducted, despite all negotiations and mediations.