Buildings on a farmland in Nile island - Reuters
CAIRO - 27 October 2020: A total of 11,075 reports of encroachments on Nile canals have been referred to the military prosecution, according to a Monday Irrigation Ministry statement.
The ministry also instructed the departments of irrigation and drainage to remove the encroachments on waterways because they reduce the ability to accomodate excess water at emergencies or during floods. Meanwhile, Egypt braces for the rain season which usually floods the low Nile Delta.
In recent years, the Egyptian government took encroachments on the Nile to another level as means to protect its almost exclusive source of fresh water, referring some cases to the military prosecution.
The Irrigation Ministry ordered the inspection of the Rosetta and Damietta branches of the Nile, eliminate all bottlenecks and referring violators to the military prosecution. The statement highlighted that some violations include backfilling certain areas in the course of the river.
Such encroachments also lead to pollution, rising water levels and wasting water at times of extreme need in the summer, as well as flooding during emergencies and heavy rains in the winter.