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Egypt, Qatar meet ahead of crucial talks on Renaissance Dam crisis

June 15, 2021 at 2:32 pm

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry (R) meets with Qatar’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani in Cairo, on May 25, 2021 [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]

The foreign ministers of Qatar and Egypt met in the Qatari capital Doha ahead of an extraordinary meeting of Arab foreign ministers to discuss the latest developments in the Renaissance Dam crisis.

Qatar’s Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman Al Thani held a meeting with his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry to discuss bilateral cooperation, especially in the field of investment and the latest developments in the region regarding the Palestinian cause and Libya’s current situation in particular.

Never-ending fight between Egypt/Ethiopia and Sudan over the Renaissance Dam - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Never-ending fight between Egypt/Ethiopia and Sudan over the Renaissance Dam – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

According to the Qatar News Agency (QNA), the foreign ministers stressed the importance of coordinating regional efforts to achieve solutions that guarantee the security and stability of the region and promote joint cooperation.

During the meeting, Qatar noted the positive developments in the relations between the two brotherly countries, stressing that these developments serve the interest of enhancing security and stability in the region.

Al Thani reiterated Doha’s appreciation of Egypt’s efforts that contributed to establishing the recent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip and highlighted the leading role of the Egyptian diaspora in developing Qatar’s public and private sectors.

Shoukry expressed his country’s gratitude to Qatar for its response to holding an emergency consultative dialogue on the Renaissance Dam in Doha.

Qatar will chair the consultative meeting of Arab foreign ministers today to discuss a number of political developments in the region.

OPINION: Is Sudan’s neutral stance hindering agreement over Ethiopia’s Renaissance Dam?

In an extraordinary parallel meeting, at the request of Egypt and Sudan, the Arab foreign ministers will discuss developments regarding the Renaissance Dam crisis. Ethiopia is building a $5 billion dam near the border with Sudan it says will provide the country with much-needed electricity and economic regeneration. Egypt believes it will restrict its access to Nile waters.

Egypt is almost entirely dependent on Nile water, receiving around 55.5 million cubic metres a year from the river, and believes that filling the dam will affect the water it needs for drinking, agriculture and electricity.

Cairo wants Ethiopia to guarantee Egypt will receive 40 billion cubic metres or more of water from the Nile. Ethiopian Irrigation Minister Seleshi Bekele said Egypt has abandoned this demand, but Egypt insists it hasn’t and issued a statement to this effect.

The meeting will also examine the situation in Palestine and the war launched by the Israeli occupation in the Gaza Strip.