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Sudan rules out force to stop Ethiopia's second filling of Renaissance Dam

June 19, 2021 at 11:26 am

Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani (R) is welcomed by Sudanese Foreign Minister Mariam Sadiq Al-Mahdi (L) upon his arrival in Khartoum, Sudan on May 24, 2021 [Mahmoud Hjaj/Anadolu Agency]

Sudanese Foreign Minister Mariam Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi ruled out using force to stop Ethiopia’s second filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), Sudanese media reported on Friday.

“The first filling of the dam was a stab in the back,” she conveyed in press remarks, noting that it caused a “massive shock” to confidence between the two countries.

The minister accused Ethiopia of using the issue of the dam to mobilise international and African public opinion against Sudan.

Egypt and Sudan view the dam as a threat because of their dependence on Nile waters, while Ethiopia considers it essential for its electrification and development.

Read: Ethiopia to build new dam on Nile tributary

The Renaissance Dam has been a source of tension in the Nile Basin ever since 2011. In April, the decade-long negotiations between Ethiopia and the downstream countries, Egypt and Sudan, reached a dead-end.

Egypt and Sudan had hoped for an agreement on the dam’s operations to be reached before reservoir filling began last year.

They then insisted on reaching an abiding agreement that respects the three countries’ interests, preventing unilateral measures related to the dam.

Ethiopia is now preparing for the second filling, which should occur in the coming rainy season – July and August.

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