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Egypt 08/04/2021

Fears of regional tensions around the Nile dam

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The new failure of negotiations between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt concerning the GERD (Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam), the great dam on the Nile built in Ethiopia, raises fears of an increase in regional tensions.
 
 
 
The construction of the GERD (Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam) on the Blue Nile began in 2011 in Guba in Ethiopia, near the border with Sudan. Since the start of the project, a dispute has been between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.
 
 
 
Ethiopia considers the dam necessary to meet its energy needs. Sudan, downstream, is concerned about regulating the flow of water through its own dams and water stations, and Egypt, further downstream, sees the dam as a threat to its water supply.
 
 
 
A meeting was organized at the beginning of March in Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo) between the ministers of Foreign Affairs and water issues of the 3 countries in the presence of the President of the Congo, Félix Tshisekedi, who holds the annual presidency of the African Union (AU ) since February. But these talks did not lead to any agreement. According to a statement from the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ethiopia would have rejected the proposals presented by Egypt as those presented by Sudan.
 
 
 
"Ethiopia has no intention of causing harm to Sudan and Egypt. But neither do we want to live in obscurity," Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said last week.
 
 
 
The Sudanese government has already warned Ethiopia against unilateral filling of the dam, saying such a move would threaten Sudan's national security.
 
 
 
In Egypt, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has just warned that there would be serious regional consequences if Egypt's water supply were affected by the dam.
 
 
 
The construction of the GERD started in 2011, the operation of filling the reservoir behind the 145 meter high dam started in July 2020. It will take 4 to 7 years to fill the reservoir behind the dam When the operation is completed, the dam will be the largest hydroelectric power station in Africa and the 7th largest in the world.

 

source : egypttoday.com, aljazeera.com, dw.com, jeuneafrique.com

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The GERD built on the Blue Nile in northwest Ethiopia is a source of tension. Downstream countries Egypt and Sudan pushing for a deal (Photo: twitter.com/grand_gerd).
   
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