Fri, 23 Oct 2020 - 09:31 GMT
CAIRO – 23 October 2020: The United States president Donald Trump urged Sudanese Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok to do all the efforts he can to reach a solution regarding The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue between Egypt and Ethiopia.
During a phone call, Friday between Trump, Hamdok and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the U.S. president asked regarding the latest updates on the dam issue saying: “How is the dam doing in Ethiopia”
He added addressing Hamdok: “Ethiopia built a dam that stops the water from flowing into the Nile which causes Egypt a little bit of a problem as it should.”
“I had a deal done for them and unfortunately Ethiopia broke the deal which should not have done. That was a great mistake” Trump said.
He noted to suspending the U.S. aid to Ethiopia over the GERD, saying “we stopped paying lot of aid to them, and they will not see that money again until they adhere to the agreement. But they build a dam that stops the water from flowing into Nile and you can’t blame Egypt from being a little bit upset.”
“I had a deal done and they broke the deal and they cannot do that” Trump said, adding, “It’s a very dangerous situation because Egypt is not gone be able to live that way. Egypt might end up blowing that dam, they said it loud and clear they might blow up the dam, and they’ll have to do something.”
During the phone call, the united states announced brokering a deal to normalize relations between Israel and Sudan. All three leaders of the United states, Sudan and Israel they agreed to begin economic and trade relations, with an initial focus on agriculture.
A joint statement issued by the three countries stated that: “The leaders agreed to the normalization of relations between Sudan and Israel and to end the state of belligerence between their nations.”
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.