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Egypt urges Ethiopia to ‘honour commitments’ on dam

Image of the Ethiopia’s Renaissance Dam [File photo]
Ethiopia’s Renaissance Dam [File photo]

Egypt on Thursday urged Addis Ababa to “honour its commitments” in regards to Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam, construction of which is now underway on the Blue Nile River.

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan have named two French firms — Artelia and BRL — to carry out a series of studies to assess the dam’s anticipated impact on the Nile River, which winds its way through all three countries.

Ethiopia, however, has refused to suspend the dam’s construction while the impact studies are being conducted.

At a Thursday press conference in Khartoum, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shokri called for the “honest implementation” of earlier commitments — agreed to by the three countries involved — regarding the dam’s construction, which, he said, must be carried out in line with international law.

Read: Eritrea denies plans to sabotage Ethiopian dam with Egypt

Delaying implementation of previous agreements, Shokri warned, would only serve to “complicate” the issue.

‘’We believe the proper, honest implementation of commitments agreed to between our three countries… is key to resolving our outstanding differences,” Egypt’s top diplomat said.

Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour, for his part, reiterated Sudan’s commitment to implementing all recommendations agreed to between the three Nile states.

“We appreciate the concerns of our Egyptian brothers in this regard,” he said. “We will work together as three brother countries to resolve any problems we might encounter.”

The controversial dam is now being built on Ethiopia’s Blue Nile River near the Sudanese border.

Egypt has long expressed fears that the dam will adversely impact its historical share of Nile water.

Note: Page updated at 14.37BST on August 7, 2017. An earlier version of this page incorrectly used ‘Sudan’ instead of ‘Ethiopia’ in the headline.

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