Sun, 27 Jun 2021 - 09:49 GMT
A handout satellite image shows a closeup view of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) and the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia June 26, 2020. Satellite image ©2020 Maxar Technologies via REUTERS
CAIRO - 27 July 2020: Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said Egypt seeks to reach a legally binding agreement on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) as the international community is aware of the great danger it poses on downstream countries.
In a phone interview with 'Kelma Akhira' TV program, Shoukry said that failing short to overcome obstacles hindering a solution over the GERD would further scale up violence and conflict in East Africa and the Horn on Africa.
The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) should shoulder its responsibility towards containing repercussions of the failure of talks in this respect, the foreign minister said.
Egypt will continue to put forth its vision vis-à-vis GERD, Shoukry said, adding that the dam issue should be taken with great seriousness.
Regarding the stance of interfering in river-related issues, the minister said that the countries nominated for membership in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) to maintain international security and stability must play their role regarding water-related issues or any issue affecting international security and stability.
"Egypt is pressing ahead with all political and diplomatic efforts in GERD talks, to reach out a fruitful result to achieve its goal, giving the priority to protecting Egyptians' interests," he said.
As for Ethiopian officials' statements on GERD, Shoukri dubbed the Ethiopian statements as "provocative", stating that such statements were meant to dissuade Egypt from the main topic. He said Egypt adopts a balanced policy that enjoys wide world respect.
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].