Egypt's Shoukry discusses latest development on coronavirus, GERD with US's Pompeo

Mohamed Soliman , Thursday 23 Apr 2020

File photo: Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry shakes hands with U.S Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Reuters

Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry telephoned his US counterpart Mike Pompeo on Thursday to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and the national efforts exerted by both countries to deal with the virus and mitigate its economic repercussions.

Pompeo expressed his thanks for an Egyptian initiative to provide medical supplies to the US to contribute to confronting the outbreak, which demonstrates the friendship between the two sides, Egyptian foreign affairs spokesman Ahmed Hafez said in a statement.

Egypt sent a military plane filled with medical aid and protective suits to the US on Tuesday.

The call touched upon a number of regional issues of mutual interest, including the latest updates concerning the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

Tensions have been building between Egypt and Ethiopia over the technical details regarding the operation and filling of the dam, which is under construction near Ethiopia's border with Sudan.

Last November, the US stepped in to host negotiations after Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia announced that talks on the operation and filling of the dam had reached a dead-end.

The three sides were expected to sign a final deal in late February, when the last meeting was scheduled to be held in Washington, but Ethiopia skipped the meetings, citing incomplete domestic discussions.

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