Egypt’s Proposal to Bring Third Party is an Unwarranted Denial of the Dialogue Progress

 

October 06, 2019

 

Addis Ababa (ENA) – The proposal by the government of Egypt to invite third party in the discussions is an unwarranted denial of the progress in the trilateral technical dialogue and violates the Agreement on the Declaration of Principles signed by the three countries on March 23, 2015, according to Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In a statement it issued the Ministry stated that Ethiopia affirms its position to advance the trilateral technical dialogue concerning the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

Ethiopia is of the conviction that the technical consultation must continue, as it presents the only option for resolution of differences among the three countries with respect to filling and operation of the GERD, it added.

The Water Affairs Ministers of Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan met in Khartoum on 04 and 05 October 2019. Prior to the Ministers’ meeting, the National Independent Scientific Research Group of the three countries met in Khartoum on 30 September – 03 October 2019.

Despite the tireless efforts of the Ministers of Water Affairs, during their two days meeting to consider the progress of the work of the NISRG, they did not manage to put a direction on the way forward due to the predetermined plan of the delegation of Egypt to make the process fail.

The statement further states that it also goes against the consent and wishes of Ethiopia and the Sudan; it negatively affects the sustainable cooperation between the Parties; undermines the ample opportunity for technical dialogue between the three countries; and disrupts the positive spirit of cooperation.

The proposal to subject the discussion on filling and operation of the GERD to a political forum is “unjustified by the nature of the outstanding technical issues”.

It will not allow attainment of a successful resolution of the technical issues as it contravenes the direction given by the leaders of the three countries to the Water Affairs Ministers to resolve the technical issues related to filling and operation of the Dam.

“Ethiopia believes the existing mechanisms of cooperation will allow resolution of differences and reminded the need to refrain from negative media and other campaigns that will have no other effect than eroding the confidence among the three countries,” it stressed.

Meanwhile, Ethiopia will reinforce its efforts to realize development of its water resource to meet the present and future needs of its people that deserve development and adequate standard of living.

Ethiopia upholds the principles of equitable and reasonable utilization and the causing of no significant harm on any other riparian country in the use of the waters of the Nile, the statement articulated.

The statement stipulated “the government of Ethiopia will continue to follow an approach that will not result in direct or indirect recognition of any preexisting water allocation treaty, which has no applicability whatsoever on Ethiopia,” .

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