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Egypt, Sudan foreign ministers coordinate position on Ethiopia dam

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Sudanese Foreign Minister Maryam Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi on June 15, 2021 [KARIM JAAFAR/AFP via Getty Images]

Egypt and Sudan's foreign ministers met today to agree on a position over Ethiopia's Renaissance Dam.

Sameh Shoukri and Maryam Sadiq Al-Mahdi reiterated their continued rejection of Ethiopia's announcement that it had started the next phase of filling the dam.

The meeting in New York came in preparation for a United Nations Security Council session set to be held on Thursday, that was requested by the two downstream countries.

However, the UNSC revealed last week that it will not be able to resolve the dispute between the three countries, describing it as "beyond the scope" and "logistical expertise" of the international body.

The French ambassador to the UN has said that it will invite the three countries to express their concern, but it will encourage them to go back to the negotiating table.

However, negotiations have continued between the three countries for some ten years now with no agreement between them.

The two ministers said that Ethiopia's decision is a clear violation of the Declaration of Principles signed between Addis Ababa, Khartoum, and Cairo in 2015.

READ: Dam's sole goal is to meet our electricity needs, says Ethiopia PM

Egypt and Sudan have consistently called for reaching a legally binding agreement on filling and operating the Renaissance Dam but Ethiopia said it would begin the second stage of filling the dam whether or not there was a deal.

Ethiopia says the $5 billion dam it is building near the border with Sudan will provide the country with electricity however Egypt and Sudan believe it will diminish their water supply.

Some heavy rhetoric has been exchanged between the countries with the director of Ethiopia's military engineering administration announcing last week that if the dam was destroyed, Egypt and Sudan "will vanish from the map and floods will drive them into the sea."

Yesterday evening, Egypt's state-run media anchor Ahmed Musa announced that Ethiopia's filling of the dam is an "aggression" on Sudan and Egypt and a "declaration of war."

Journalist Amr Adib said that it is Ethiopia that is beating the drums of war, not Egypt or Sudan who are looking for a diplomatic solution.

Egypt's Irrigation Ministry has said that Ethiopia's decision to go ahead with the second filling will increase the crisis and tension in the region and create a situation which threatens regional and international security and peace.

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]

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AfricaAsia & AmericasEgyptEthiopiaInternational OrganisationsNewsSudanUNUS
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