Addis Ababa, and before the commencement of the UN Security Council session on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, has officially notified Khartoum and Cairo of the start of the second filling process.
Agencies: AlTaghyeer: Sarah Taj al-Sir
The Egyptian Ministry of Irrigation considered that the unilateral Ethiopian action as a clear and dangerous breach of the Declaration of Principles Agreement, and will lead to creating a situation that threatens security and peace at the international and regional levels.
AlTaghyeer was not able unfortunately to obtain an immediate official comment from the Sudanese side.
The Egyptian media said that the Egyptian Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation, Mohamed Abdel-A’ty, received an official letter from his Ethiopian counterpart stating that Ethiopia had started the process of filling for the second year.
The minister indicated that the Egyptian Foreign Ministry in turn sent the Ethiopian letter to the President of the Security Council to inform him of this “dangerous development.”
The Egyptian Ministry of Irrigation stated that the procedure reveals once again Ethiopia’s “bad faith” and its insistence on taking unilateral measures to impose a fait accompli and fill and operate the Renaissance Dam.
Without an agreement, as the Egyptian ministry stated, Ethiopia fails to take into account the interests of the three countries and limits the damages of this dam to the two downstream countries, which will increase the “state of crisis and tension in the region”.
Abdel-Aty considered Addis Ababa’s move a violation of international laws and norms that govern projects built on the common basins of international rivers, including the Nile River, whose resources are regulated by agreements and charters that oblige Ethiopia to respect Egypt’s rights and water interests and prevent damage to it.
The Foreign Minister arrives in New York
In a related context, Sudanese Foreign Minister Maryam al-Sadiq al-Mahdi arrived in New York this evening, Monday, to participate in the Security Council session.
She was received by the Chargé d’Affairs and members of Sudan’s permanent mission in New York, as well as the Sudanese ambassador to Washington.
The Minister will hold several bilateral meetings with her counterparts and permanent delegates of the member states of the Council, led by the permanent members and African countries in the Council, in order to urge them to take the necessary steps to advance African efforts in order to reach a binding legal agreement to fill and operate the Renaissance Dam.
According to AlTaghyeer’s follow-up, the Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, Yasser Abbas, will head to New York late Monday night, joining his country’s delegation to participate in the Security Council session.
Renaissance Dam Higher Committee
The Higher Committee for the Renaissance Dam, headed by Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok, decided to hold its next meeting at the site of the Roseires reservoir.
The committee reviewed Sudan’s preparations for the Security Council session, and secured the negotiating team’s position regarding the Renaissance Dam.
The meeting called for intensifying contacts with the concerned countries, led by Tunisia, Kenya and Niger, in addition to France, which chairs the Security Council sessions during the current month of July.
The meeting took note of the results of the contacts made by the United Arab Emirates to bring the views of the three parties closer.
The Supreme Committee welcomed the Emirati efforts, and expressed Sudan’s readiness to deal positively with these efforts.
The meeting briefed on the developments of work in the construction of the Renaissance Dam and its impact on the second filling, which has become a fait accompli, and in this regard stressed the continuation of precautionary measures to reduce the negative effects of the second filling process.
The meeting also stressed the importance of continuing diplomatic efforts to reach a binding legal agreement on filling and operating the Renaissance Dam.