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Egypt, Ethiopia to resume talks on Renaissance Dam

Prime Minister of Ethiopia Hailemariam Desalegn (C), President of Egypt Abdel Fattah el-Sisi (R) and President of Sudan Omar Al-Bashir (L) attend a meeting on Nile dam talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 29 January 2018 [Minasse Wondimu Hailu/Anadolu Agency]

Egyptian Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly has said that Egypt and Ethiopia will resume negotiations over Ethiopia’s Renaissance Dam within the next two weeks.

Madbouly met with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on the side-lines of the 11th African Union summit yesterday, during which Madbouly is reported to have handed Ahmed a letter from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi concerning the development of bilateral relations between the two countries.

Madbouly added that his Ethiopian counterpart affirmed his personal commitment to “Egypt’s rights in the Nile River”.

Madbouly told the accompanying media delegation that during the meeting both Prime Ministers decided to establish a fund between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan, adding that the central bank governors of the three countries will meet to discuss the fund.

Egypt: Negotiations on Ethiopia dam ‘not easy

Egyptian diplomatic sources said Egypt wants to reach written agreements with Ethiopia, since “this is the most appropriate time to put pressure on Addis Ababa to obtain written commitments in the form of an official agreement between the three countries Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia”.

Egyptian sources revealed to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that the Egyptian presidency had previously sent a letter to the foreign ministry criticising its dealing with the question of the dam and not exploiting Ethiopia’s internal crises to make progress.

The sources explained that the Renaissance Dam project will give Addis Ababa control over the Blue Nile water – a major tributary of the River Nile – which would lead to a shift in regional power.

READ: Ethiopian police arrest ex-director of renaissance dam construction company

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