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Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan tripartite talks end with agreements - Daily News Egypt

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Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan tripartite talks end with agreements

This is the fourth round of talks for the trio in the past year after previous efforts had failed


A picture taken on May 28, 2013 shows the Blue Nile in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony.  (AFP Photo)
A picture taken on May 28, 2013 shows the Blue Nile in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony.
(AFP Photo)

Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan agreed to conduct studies on the effects of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) under a six-month deadline, after two days of “honest consultations” in Sudan.

The talks were headed by the water ministers of the three countries, who agreed to use one or more international consulting companies to conduct the two studies, recommended in an international report. Egypt’s Water and Irrigation Minister Hossam El-Din Moghazy was cited by state-run MENA as saying Egypt’s acceptance of the dam depends on the results of the studies and that the results are binding to all parties.

The trio held talks in Sudanese capital Khartoum on Monday and Tuesday, after which they announced the results in a joint statement.

Former Director of the Arab and African Research Centre in Cairo, Helmy El-Shaarawy said what can be understood from the results of the talks is that “Egypt is dealing with the dam as a matter of fact,” and that its construction cannot be stopped.

He believes that given this, political intentions and indications – such as President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s announcement that he is willing to visit Ethiopia up to three times to resolve issues – matter more than economic or technical indications.

The GERD, which is currently under construction, has been the cause for much tension between Egypt and Ethiopia because Egypt fears that the dam will have a detrimental effect on its share of Nile water. However, El-Shaarawy said that these fears are fueled by the media to a certain extent, since Egypt has a capacity to store large amounts water and “Ethiopia knows that”.

Since 2013, the three countries had been in disagreement over how to implement the recommendations of the International Panel of Experts (IPoE), released in a report in 2013. The report recommended conducting the two studies to assess the effects of GERD on downstream countries Egypt and Sudan, including the environmental and socioeconomic impacts.

The trio also agreed in Khartoum to form a committee made up of four national experts from each of the three countries. There had been disagreements on the formation of the expert panel that will oversee the building of the dam, since Egypt wanted representatives from Cairo, Khartoum and Addis Ababa only, while the latter two wanted the committee to include international experts as well.

The talks in Khartoum are the fourth such talks. The last round of tripartite talks was held in January but ended without reaching an agreement. It was preceded by tripartite talks in November and December of last year, but these also failed.

Egypt and Ethiopia have been locked in a diplomatic dispute over GERD, since Egypt fears that the dam will affect its share of Nile water.

Downstream countries Egypt and Sudan together receive the majority of Nile water. As per agreements signed in 1929 and 1959, Egypt annually receives 55.5bn cubic metres of the estimated total 84bn cubic metres of Nile water produced each year and Sudan receives 18.5bn cubic metres.

However, the two water sharing agreements, which guarantee Egypt the lion’s share of water, were signed in the absence of Ethiopia.

Al-Sisi and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn met in June and the two countries later announced a joint committee to streamline discussions on GERD. Both nations hailed the agreement as a “new chapter in relations between Egypt and Ethiopia… based on openness and mutual understanding and cooperation”.

 

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  • Alula Shocking Egypt

    I just do not understand at all why you claim a share still. you have no share. We have not shared anything with you. If the regime in Ethiopia is recognizing what you called your share, it will be considered by Ethiopians as treason of high level. You better spend you time digging water holes or desalinating your sea water. Ethiopians have no any obligation to provide you free water while they are starving to death. Again, the water , blue Nile is our white gold like Lesothu’s white gold. Besides, you are not consistent in what you say. You post a lot of lies ,biases, prejudices, inconsistent ,unethical, unprofessional articles online. You think the entire world thinks like you. You talk about 1929 and 1959, we have no clue about this and it is not our agreement with you. you need to go to your slave masters and talk about it with them , not with us. About historical right, you have no even history in Africa or current Egypt leave alone to have historical right on our water. you came to Africa, current ancient Egypt during the Ottoman times circa 7AD and you destroyed the Africans in ancient Egypt and you occupied it and you were supposed to go back to where you came from but your remained up today in Egypt. The Egyptian Civilization is Ethiopians civilization and Ethiopian history. you have no history in Egypt itself leave alone in Africa or blue Nile. Ethiopia is Omega and alpha and the mother of ancient African Egypt, not today’s Arab Egypt. There is no historical basis to your presence in ancient Egypt. The Africans like Nubians and others in Egypt are still under your colony today. We need to liberate them from endless colonization.

    • Hope

      Shame on Egyptian journalists and politicians! Your attitude towards Ethiopia and other Nile basin countries is deplorable. You talk to the Egyptian populace the same way Hitler addressed the German people in the past century. Your arrogant mentality may cause a permanent enmity between Egypt and the Nile basin countries. You threaten Ethiopia simply because you could have less water because of the construction of Ethiopia’s GERD dam. Listen, Ethiopia and other African countries have both natural and political rights to
      use the Nile for their economic development.

      Egypt, give thanks to Ethiopia and other African’s for the several thousands of years you have used the Nile waters freely.

      Egyptians wake up from your slumber of arrogance and superiority. It is time for Egyptian leaders to build trust and respect between Egypt, Ethiopia, and other Nile basin countries. If you keep on reiterating
      your “historic rights” which Great Britain gave you, you will be forced to pay for every drop of fresh water coming from Ethiopian highlands and other Nile basin countries.

      Egypt has no exclusive historic rights to Nile waters. Nile belongs to Ethiopia, Egypt and all the
      Nile basin countries. If you keep on reiterating your “historic rights” which Great Britain gave you, you will be
      forced to pay for every drop of fresh water coming from Ethiopian highlands and other Nile basin countries.

      The heroic people of Ethiopia demand a genuine apology from the people of Egypt and its leaders for threatening Ethiopia for the past 50 years.

  • ZakSai

    This is not ‘ win – win’ for Ethiopia is giving in while Egypt is gaining. Alemayehu Tegegnu got this one wrong. 1. Ethiopia is ceding sovereignty over the dam by allowing a committee made up of not only the three concerned parties but so called ‘ international experts, who can be sold to the highest bidder’ 2. Ethiopia is to be bound by the ruling of such organisation whose composition is suspect. 3. Egypt Independent has an even more detailed agreement, which states Ethiopia is agreeing to curb the initial phase of the volume to a paltry 14 billion cubic meter http://news.google.com/news/url?sr=1&sa=t&ct2=us%2F0_0_s_16_0_t&usg=AFQjCNEzkLiaotaGY_sJEW_6RdKMzRj7zg&did=6715b53722eff93d&sig2=HUWk8JTTa3ptHOGY50NjZA&cid=52778590421679&ei=jsD-U7DMC8rRggfjyYHYBg&rt=STORY&vm=STANDARD&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.egyptindependent.com%2F%2Fnews%2Fegypt-ethiopia-agree-controversial-dam-s-mechanisms4. While i don’t have problem with oversight at GERD, we should have been adamant in reciprocal presence at Lake Nasser, to to tabulate the volume of water entering Egypt 4. There was no mention of legitimate quota for Ethiopia whose population is about double soon while Egypt is wasting valuable water in the scorching desert which should have been stipulated in any agreement regarding the Nile Any agreement with Egypt should include ‘ water conservation schemes’ not just for our sake but for its survival .

    I think it is not too late for this is just a preliminary agreement and not an international treaty. To the best of my knowledge, any agreement of any consequence has to be signed by the Ethiopian Foreign Minister with eventual ratification by the elected parliament.

  • Challa

    ”There had been disagreements on the formation of the expert panel that will oversee the building of the dam, since Egypt wanted representatives from Cairo, Khartoum and Addis Ababa only, while the latter two wanted the committee to include international experts as well.”
    The above statement is misleading. It’s actually Egypt that wanted to include international experts. It now seem that Egypt accepts the position of Ethiopian and Sudan to have a committee of the three countries.

  • Haile

    Nice! we better undurstand each other. Being thinking only oneself takes no where.

  • Pingback: Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan tripartite talks end with agreements - Ethiopian Chronicle : ዜና መዋእል ኢትዮጵያ()

https://dailynewsegypt.com/2014/08/27/egypt-ethiopia-sudan-tripartite-talks-end-agreements/
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