UAE efforts to break deadlock in tripartite negotiations between, Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia on GERD issue

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Thu, 14 Jan 2021 - 01:11 GMT

File- FILE - Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam is seen as it undergoes construction work on the river Nile in Guba Woreda, Benishangul Gumuz Region, Ethiopia September 26, 2019. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri

File- FILE - Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam is seen as it undergoes construction work on the river Nile in Guba Woreda, Benishangul Gumuz Region, Ethiopia September 26, 2019. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri

CAIRO – 14 January 2021: In a bid to find a solution and clarification for Sudan’s stance towards the controversial and disputed rules of the construction and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia, the United Arab of Emirates (the UAE) sent a delegation to Khartoum. 
 
The high-level delegation from the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs has paid a one-day visit to Sudan, in a way to bridge the gap between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia and to break the deadlock in the negotiations among the three countries, anonymous sources told Sudan’s state-owned news agency SUNA on Wednesday.
 
The delegation met with officials in the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Irrigation and Water Resources, and listened to a detailed explanation about Sudan's stance in this important file. 
 
The sources added that the Emirati initiative did not come at the request of Sudan.
 
 
 
Meanwhile, a Sudanese delegation, headed by Member of the Sovereignty Council of Sudan Shams El Din Kebashy, arrived in Cairo Thursday to pay a one-day state visit whereas bilateral relations and joint cooperation will be discussed.
 
The delegation consists of Minister of Culture and Information Faisal Mohamed Saleh, Chief of General Intelligence Gamal Abdel Meguid, and Secretary-General of the council Mohamed Youssef.
 
 
 
The tripartite talks between the three countries failed again due to disagreements over how to resume negotiations, according to a statement from Egypt’s Foreign Ministry on Sunday.
 
It was added that the six-way talks on GERD failed to make any progress, due to a disagreement on how to resume the negotiations and other procedural aspects of the negotiating process.
 
Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and Irrigation Minister Mohamed Abdel Aati took part Sunday in the talks, chaired by South Africa, the current president of the African Union, with their counterparts from Sudan and Ethiopia via video conference.
 
In a statement, the ministry said that Egypt reiterated during the meeting its readiness to engage in serious talks to reach a legally binding agreement on the filling and operating of the dam, in a way that serves the interests of the three African countries and protects Egypt’s water rights.
 
"Sudan has insisted that the experts, appointed by the African Union Commission, be tasked with proposing solutions to the controversial issues," the statement said.
 
However, Egypt and Ethiopia have expressed reservations on Sudan's proposal, as the experts are not specialists in the technical and engineering matters related to water resource management and dam operation. it added.
 
South Africa’s foreign minister said she felt sorry for not achieving any progress from the meetings.
 
Egypt is diplomatically pressing to find solutions to the outstanding issues regarding the dam’s operation and reservoir filling, particularly ahead of the second round of the filling process due in August 2021.
 
In mid-July 2020, Ethiopian authorities unilaterally carried out the first phase of the filling process with 4.9 billion cubic meters; and it is expected – as reported by the BBC- that the second phase of the filling would reach 13 billion cubic meters.
 
 In previous remarks to Egypt Today, former Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Houssam Moughazi said, “It is hopeful that the three countries.

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