On Saturday, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) will host the foreign ministers of Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan for talks on the Grand Renaissance Dam. Negotiations will continue over a period of three days to reach an agreement on filling the Renaissance Dam that Addis Ababa is building, and Cairo and Khartoum fear its effects on them.
On Saturday, Kinshasa will host a meeting of the foreign ministers of Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan for talks on the issue AlNahda dam The controversial building Addis Ababa is building on the Nile River.
Officials at the Congolese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Presidency said that the three-day meeting will be hosted by President Felix Tshisekedi, who assumed the presidency of the African Union last month, confirming a report in “John Africa” magazine.
“John Afrique” stated that the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Fakih Mohamed, is expected to attend the talks.
Earlier this month, Egypt and Sudan urged the Democratic Republic of the Congo to lead efforts to resume negotiations on the disputed dam.
Since 2011, Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia have been negotiating to reach an agreement on filling the Renaissance Dam that Addis Ababa is building, and Cairo and Khartoum fear its effects on them.
Despite these years, the three countries failed to reach an agreement.
The Nile, the longest river in the world, is a lifeline that provides water and electricity to the ten countries it crosses.
Upstream countries say the hydropower produced by the GERD will be vital to meeting the energy needs of their 110 million residents.
The downstream country, Egypt, which relies on the Nile to provide about 97 percent of its irrigation and drinking water, sees the dam as a threat to its existence.
The second stage of filling the dam
Sudan, which is also a downstream country, fears that its dams will be at risk if Ethiopia proceeds to fill the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam before reaching an agreement.
Although Egypt and Sudan urged Ethiopia to postpone its plans to fill the dam reservoir until a comprehensive agreement was reached, Addis Ababa announced on July 21, 2020 that it had completed the first phase of filling the reservoir with a capacity of 4.9 billion cubic meters, which would allow the testing of the first two pumps in the dam.
It also confirmed its intention to implement the second phase of filling the dam lake in July.
On Tuesday, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi warned against compromising Egypt’s share of the Nile water.
“We do not threaten anyone, but no one can take a drop of water from Egypt (…) Otherwise, the region will witness a state of instability that no one can imagine,” he said in a comment on the developments in the negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
France 24 / AFP