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Sudan's Bashir 'ignored' impact of Ethiopia's dam on Egypt: Egyptian official

Sudan's support for the Grand Renaissance Dam in Ethiopia prompts Egyptian response

Ahram Online , Friday 6 Dec 2013
Dam
This April 2, 2013, photo shows the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam in Asosa Region, Ethiopia (Photo: AP)
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An Egyptian official has criticised Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir for his recent expression of support for the construction of a massive new dam on a Nile tributary in Ethiopia.

Al-Bashir said on Wednesday that Sudan supported the Grand Renaissance Dam project, which is currently under construction, because it would "benefit all Nile Basin states." Egypt has expressed strong reservations about the dam and its possible effect on the volume of water that reaches Sudan and Egypt, both downstream from Ethiopia.

“We are not against the pros [of the dam] and we didn’t ignore it, but Al-Bashir did not explain how we could deal with the cons,” an official at the Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture told London-based Al-Sharq Al-Awsat newspaper.

The ministerial official, who asked not to be named, further said that that the Sudanese leader has ignored the impact of the dam on Egypt’s share of the Nile water and the fate of water-sharing agreements.

Tensions escalated between Egypt and Ethiopia in May, when Ethiopia began diverting the Blue Nile as part of the construction process.

At one point, Egyptian politicians were caught on camera at a meeting with then-president Mohamed Morsi, suggesting that the dam be sabotaged.

Construction of the $4.2 billion (3.2 billion euro) Grand Renaissance Dam has nevertheless gone ahead. When complete, it is set to be Africa's largest hydroelectric dam.

For decades, Egypt held veto rights over all upstream projects, following powers granted by a 1929 colonial-era treaty with Britain.

Egypt's subsequent 1959 deal with Sudan gave the two downstream countries more than 90 percent of the Nile's water.

The negotiations – involving Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia – regarding the construction of a giant dam in Ethiopia are expected to resume in Khartoum starting Sunday.

A similar meeting had been held on 4 November involving technical representatives from the three countries, but no tangible results were reached.

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Dawa
09-12-2013 10:55pm
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Peace
Dont worry the nile water will developpe every country, even Europians
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lynn
08-12-2013 12:45am
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nile water
LET ME TELL YOU THE HISTORY OF SUDAN, THE FIRST PRIME MINISTER OF SUDAN,1954-1958 WAS CHARACTERIZED BY POLITICAL CONFLICTS BETWEEN EGYPT AND SUDAN OVER SHARING OF NILE WATER..HE NEVER EVER,AGREED WITH 1929 COLONIAL AGREENT BETWEEN EGYPT&BRITAIN OVER THE USAGE OF NILE WATER.SUDAN NOW HAS NO ANY OTHER CHOICE SINCE IT LOST SOUTH SUDAN.
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Carrie Nosnibor
09-12-2013 03:35pm
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Why?
WHO ARE YOU TO CRITISIZE THE HISTORY OF SUDAN, I'LL HAVE YOU KNOW I BLEED THE FIRST PRIME MINISTER OF SUDAN, FROM 1954 THROUGH 1958. I WILL BEAT YOU DOWN WITH MY WORDS OF LOVE. THESE ARE MY FAVORITE WORDS HWO DARE YOU.
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cheer
07-12-2013 09:07pm
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coopration
Dear Alham Editor, I hope Egyptian leaders are not misled or miscalculated comments given by Eritreans calling war between Egypt and Ethiopia. Eritrean people are under economic and political catastrophic condition. Why Ahram editors violates their own set of codes on comments that calling war and hatred in the people. I hope Egyptian they do not opt to choose war to secure 1929 and 1959 colonial era by military. If Egyptian leaders choose war, it is up to them. But this increases enmity between two ancient countries linked by culture and religion. Once enmity grows, enmity has no principle, rule, moral, ethics, norm, etc. Enmity invites destruction by any cost to demoralize the other. I do not think Egyptian choose this bad stand. Ethiopian leaders how far they are bad or good or different political vies, they have one and the same principle in the use of Nile River. Please endorse the Nile Dam and look forward for cooperation to develop Nile basin. Egyptian had better to invest in upper stream countries to develop and upgrade the flow of Nile water by forestation and hydraulic engineering than singing dram of war.
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18



nafabdujalil
07-12-2013 12:58pm
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endorsing Nile Dam
I do not think Egyptian choose this bad stand of war. Ethiopian leaders how far they are bad or good or different political vies, they have one and the same principle in the use of Nile River. Please endorse the Nile Dam and look forward for cooperation to develop Nile basin. Egyptian had better to invest in upper stream countries to develop and upgrade the flow of Nile water by forestation and hydraulic engineering than singing dram of war.
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Dan
07-12-2013 07:20am
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Egypt needs to work with Ethiopia
I'm a Kenyan, and also an African at heart. When I hear or read some comments from Eritreans elsewhere regarding the old homeland Ethiopia or Africa in General, it makes me sick to my stomach. Please stop your venomous comments that only brings more misery to you and your people. You have nothing in common with Egyptians, and they certainly don't need your help. The time has come for Black Africans to speak with our brothers in Egypt to stop the old practice of looking at others in Black Africa as sub-people and begin working on win-win solution that benefits all. We in Kenya and of course our neighbours Ethiopians don't want to heart anyone and yet don't walk away from our responsibilities to make life changing development for our people. Let's work together instead of dreaming military might against peaceful people.
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admas
07-12-2013 06:00am
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nile dam
The Egyptians can learn from Sudanese a great deal.Three previous Egyptian administrations failed to deal with this inevitable problem for so long.The Sisi administration should not follow the same path.Remember,Egypt is not dealing only with Ethiopia.Others also want their fair share.
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15



someone
07-12-2013 04:49am
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mind your business
Alazar Haile and Kiros weldemeskel could you please mind your business and leberate your people from the worst regiem ever in the world? you Shaibiya buchilas can not be concerened about our dam and what can we expect from you/
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Were-becha
07-12-2013 03:30am
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Boa-bla-bla......
Here is some eri people talking about the mother land ethiopia ... Get a life people ... Ethiopian is developing the enemy is crying ....
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13



Alex
07-12-2013 12:02am
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On Egypts query- the 'cons'
I read the above Egyptian official reaction to the Sudanese president support on the GERD. It is undoubtedly clear that Egypt so called water share agreements and so called historical rights are in question. This was officially challenged by all Nile basin countries because of its illegality and unfairness. It looks that the official who gave this comment is still in his old dream and didn't want to accept the changing dynamics on the ground and swimming alone in the regressive Egyptian leadership dreams. Looking at the reality, though the so called previous treaties reflect share to the Sudan. the latters share was not rational and fair, only provides advantage to Egypt which benefited almost 90% and wanted to keep its arrogant aspiration that didn't consider mutual interest and cooperation. The official stand of the Sudanese government now clearly signals its stance and understanding of mutual benefit and cooperation and a shift from an old subversive and rigid 'me only policy of Egypt' The fate of Egypt's old water sharing agreements is very clear in that it has no place hereafter to continue and is already replaced by the Nile basin Cooperation Framework Agreement which has the majority basin countries support. I commend to Egypt that the option left to protect its water interest is only to cooperate and negotiate with the whole Nile basin countries by signing the CFA, nullifying those irrational and illogical colonial agreements which are excuses for so called 'historical rights' and 'veto right on the Nile water'. OR continue with its subversive and bullying policy as it did in the past and continue trying to sabotage and destabilise the upstream countries, which will end up in complicating Egypt's problem. For sure this will end not in messing up upstream countries but only Egypt. All the Nile basin countries are watching Egypt and want to see a practical shift on its policy. Egypt has to refrain from coming up with regressive and subversive agendas and proposals to complicate and delay GERD as it was trying to do on last November East Nile basin countries meeting. The next week meeting will be a success if there is a shift on Egypt's rigid position, irrational claim and practical commitment to respect the upstream countries right to use the Nile water as their own national and natural resources. This is their uncompromising sovereign right.
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aladdin, Egypt
06-12-2013 11:07pm
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Unstable Dam
the proposed dam will cover large area of farm land. It is also bult on unstable ground called African Rift and will be filled with sediment in short time. It is a wakeup call for us to start conserving water and end our silly bickering and fake spirituality. The revolution exposed our rotten society and complete ignorance of modern life and even understanding to religion. Allah Akber.
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Ben
07-12-2013 02:52pm
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Only 1 right 3 wrong
the proposed dam will cover large area of farm land. You got wrong. It is also bult on unstable ground called African Rift Another wrong. and will be filled with sediment in short time. Really? Wrong. It is a wakeup call for us to start conserving water and end our silly bickering and fake spirituality. Ding, ding, ding, you are right.
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