Sudan might not join GERD negotiations, Monday: sources

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Mon, 14 Sep 2020 - 10:21 GMT

CAIRO – 14 September 2020:  Sudan might not join the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) negotiations, Monday, with Egypt and Ethiopia according to unnamed sources told al-Arabiya Saudi website.

The sources added that Sudan’s decision comes as a result of the dam’s hindered talks and continuing disputes. The three countries [Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia] were supposed to resume talks via video conference, Monday according to al-Arabiya.

 Egypt’s spokesman for the Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation, Mohamed al Sebaei, said that the latest developments regarding GERD was submitting final reports to South Africa, the current president of the African Union on the talks’ findings.

He added in statements to MBC Channel, Sunday that currently there are continuous discussions at the diplomatic and political level to determine what the next steps will be regarding GERD.

Earlier this month, Egypt's Embassy in Washington hosted the first of a series of webinars to discuss the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam negotiations.

The embassy highlighted Egypt's efforts to reach a fair agreement on GERD, Spokesman for the Foreign Ministry Ahmed Hafez tweeted.

The webinars host renowned hydrologists, water resources experts, and members of leading think tanks.

Since 2014, Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan have entered into negotiations on the building of the dam to avoid any possible threats on the Nile downstream countries [Egypt and Sudan]. The latest round of talks, which convened early June, reached a stalemate, and was followed by the Ethiopian unilateral act of deciding to fill the dam’s reservoir mid-July without reaching a final agreement with Egypt and Sudan.

Egypt previously decided to request the United Nations Security Council’s intervention in the dispute on Ethiopia’s massive dam, after Egypt had said several times that the two countries have reached a deadlock.

The conflict between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia dates back to May 2011 when Ethiopia started building the dam; Egypt voiced concern over its water share [55.5 billion cubic meters]. Three years later, a series of tripartite talks between the two countries along with Sudan began to reach an agreement, while Ethiopia continued the dam construction.

In 2015, the three countries signed the Declaration of Principles, per which the downstream countries should not be negatively affected by the construction of the dam. In October 2019, Egypt blamed Addis Ababa for hindering a final agreement concerning a technical problem, calling for activating Article No. 10 of the Declaration of Principles, which stipulates that if the three countries could not find a solution to these disputes, they have to ask for mediation.

 

 

 

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