Ethiopia rejects regional, international mediation to solve GERD crisis: FM Shoukry tells Senate

Ahram Online , MENA , Wednesday 28 Apr 2021

Sameh Shoukry
File photo of Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry (Photo: AP)

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said on Wednesday that Ethiopia has turned down regional and international mediation to solve the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) crisis.

During a meeting of the Senate's Arab and African affairs committee on Wednesday, the FM briefed MPs about the outcome of his recent African tour, during which he delivered messages from the president to a number of African leaders on the latest developments in the GERD issue.

Shoukry said Egypt supports Ethiopia's development and progress, but not at the expense of other countries, especially when it comes to Nile water.

The foreign minister said Egypt advocates a political solution to the GERD crisis.

Tensions have mounted in the past weeks after the latest trilateral round of talks in Kinshasa earlier in April failed to produce an agreement to re-launch deadlocked negotiations.

Ethiopia’s rejection of several proposals by Egypt and Sudan on the negotiation mechanism, which includes an international quartet mediation, has led to the collapse of the Kinshasa talks.

The three countries have resorted to diplomacy in the past weeks, briefing regional and international counterparts on their stances and developments in the latest deadlock in negotiations.

They have all sent letters to the UN Security Council (UNSC) to clarify positions and developments with regards to the dam, and exchanged accusations over who is responsible for the failure of the talks.

Egypt sent its foreign minister on a six-nation tour in Africa to clarify the country’s stance in the GERD dispute, with Sudan set to send its foreign minister on a similar tour this week to also brief several African countries on Khartoum's stance in the crisis.

Addis Ababa plans to move ahead with the second filling of the dam despite the objections of Egypt and Sudan.

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