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Uganda signs security agreement with Egypt amid Renaissance Dam crisis

April 8, 2021 at 9:34 pm

Workers at the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam in Ethiopia on 26 December 2019 [EDUARDO SOTERAS/AFP/Getty Images]

Uganda announced on Wednesday the signing of an agreement with Egypt to exchange military information. This came in light of the escalating tension between Egypt and Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam project, which Addis Ababa built on a tributary of the Nile River to generate hydroelectric power.

Uganda Peoples’ Defence Forces (UPDF) announced in a statement that the Ugandan Military Intelligence signed an accord with the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate.

The statement quoted Major General Staff Sameh Saber El-Degwi, a senior Egyptian intelligence official who headed the Cairo delegation to Kampala, stating: “The fact that both Uganda and Egypt are among the Nile River basin countries, entails that cooperation between the two sides is inevitable because what affects Uganda, in one way or another, affects Egypt.”

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has warned of the risks of a conflict that may erupt because of the Renaissance Dam that Addis Ababa is building on the Blue Nile.

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Ethiopia relies on the dam to boost electricity supply and advance economic development. However, Egypt fears that the project may endanger its water supplies.

Meanwhile, Sudan has expressed concerns over the dam’s potential impact on its share of the Nile water.

For years, Uganda, which is the source of the Nile River, has opposed Egypt’s attempts to control hydropower projects in upstream countries.

According to the agreement, the two countries will regularly exchange information.