In the wake of the failed round of negotiations over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam which took place on 19 December in Addis Ababa, the Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources issued a statement expressing Egypt’s stance. The recent and final round featured the participation of ministerial delegations from Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia, and was hoped to accelerate the finalisation of an agreement regarding the rules for filling and operation of the GERD within four months.
The Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources’ statement blames the unsuccessful round on Ethiopia’s persistent rejection of any of the proposed technical or legal solutions that would safeguard the interests of all three countries, Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia itself.
During the Cabinet meeting held on 20 December, Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, Hani Sewilam, explained the details of the negotiations which took place in the last round. He also pointed out that the statement issued by the Ministry in the wake of the failed round highlights the Ethiopian intransigence that has persisted ever since negotiations started some 10 years ago, to accept any compromise regarding the technical and legal solutions that would secure the interests of all three countries Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia. Furthermore, Dr Sewilam reminded, Ethiopia keeps retracting on agreed-upon principles that would secure serve towards chances of success in the negotiations.
The Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources stressed that Egypt will closely monitor the process of filling and operating the GERD, and that Egypt retains its right according to international codes, to defend its water and national security in case of any harm.
Last October, Cairo hosted the third round of negotiations held in 2023 over the GERD, while the second round was held in Addis Ababa in September, and the first was held in Cairo in August.
For full details on the GERD predicament:
21 December 2023