It is a real strategy of “at the same time” that Ethiopia is now deploying about his immense dam of the Renaissance in the heart of a strong tension between the country of the Nobel peace Abiy Ahmed and the Sudan and Egypt. This Saturday, Ethiopia indicated that it intended to begin to fill the tank of his gigantic dam on the Nile ” in the next two weeks “… while pledging to try to conclude a final agreement with Egypt and the Sudan during this period, under the auspices of the african Union. The communiqué, quoted by the AFP, and released Saturday morning by the office of the Prime minister of ethiopia Abiy Ahmed, contradicts in part the declarations, on Friday evening, the leaders of egypt and sudan, ensuring that Ethiopia had accepted to suspend the release of water from its dam until an agreement can be reached.

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A dam is a source of tensions

The great dam of the Renaissance (Gerd), which will become the largest hydroelectric dam in Africa, with a production capacity of more than 6,000 megawatts, is the source of sharp regional tensions. If Ethiopia sees the dam is 145 meters high as essential to its development and its electrification, the Sudan and Egypt fear it will restrict their access to water. Egypt, which considers this project as a threat is ” existential “, called last week for the security Council to intervene. A new meeting of the Council shall be held on Monday. On Friday, the leaders of three countries spoke at a video conference organised and chaired by the head of the State of south africa Cyril Ramaphosa, chairperson of the african Union.

In the evening, the services of egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sissi had called for a ” final agreement legally binding and to prevent any unilateral action, including the impoundment of the dam “. Same tone on the side of Khartoum, where, according to the Prime minister, Abdalla Hamdok, it was ” agreed that the impoundment of the dam would be postponed until an agreement can be reached “. But in press release Saturday morning, Addis Ababa, makes no mention of the report as such and seems to be sticking to his schedule said that he was ready to continue discussions toward a final agreement.

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tripartite Discussions

” Ethiopia has planned to begin filling the Gerd in the next two weeks, during which the construction work will continue. It is during this period that the three countries agreed to find a final agreement on the few outstanding issues “, the statement said ethiopian. Tripartite discussions on the implementation and the management of the dam had resumed earlier in June, the main points of contention remaining the operation of the plant in times of drought and the mechanisms for solving possible disputes.

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Critical ethiopian

Ethiopia has been reluctant to the involvement of third parties in the process, especially after the attempt of mediation of the american government, at the request of Egypt, which ended in February by a failure, Addis Ababa, notably the United States to promote the Egypt. The government of Abiy Ahmed, Nobel peace Prize, 2019, has also criticized Egypt for having detailed his grievances in a letter sent in may to the security Council of the united Nations, a process called attempt to “exert diplomatic pressures external’.

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the african Union in the part

In its announcement on Saturday, Addis Ababa and welcomed the involvement of the african Union in the record, reaffirming that ” the african issues must find african solutions “. On Friday, the sudanese authorities have stated that the technical committees of the three countries would try to find a final agreement in two weeks. “The resumption of technical discussions at the tripartite on the filling, and the rules for the management of Gerd, as well as the involvement of the african Union, are developments more than welcome,” said AFP William Davison, of the conflict prevention organisation International Crisis Group. The researcher has deemed it “appropriate that the AU now facilitates the discussions,” and added that the united Nations should take over the last resort. The Nile, which flows on some 6,000 km away, is a source of supply of water and electricity essential to around a dozen countries in East Africa. Egypt derives 97 % of its water needs from the river.

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