Egypt s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry addressing the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday. Photo : Egyptian Foreign Ministry
Speaking before the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday in New York, Shoukry reiterated Egypt's rejection of Ethiopia's unilateral practices on filling the GERD and its attempts to use the dam to impose a fait accompli.
Egypt is "at the top of the list of arid countries" and is experiencing a "severe decline" in per capita water availability, he said.
"Egypt is facing a severe water crisis, with a water deficit of over 50 percent of our needs," the Egyptian foreign minister said, adding that Ethiopia has persisted in unilaterally filling and operating the GERD in a clear violation of international law.
Shoukry added that Egypt is still keen to continue negotiations to reach a solution that satisfies all parties.
He also welcomed the results of the historic United Nations Water Conference, held in March 2023.
The Egyptian foreign minister also warned of the growing problems of racism, xenophobia, and Islamophobia.
In his speech, Shoukry said that these phenomena have led to increasing waves of violence and hatred against Muslim communities. He commended the latest measures taken by Denmark to stop incidents of burning the Holy Quran in the country.
Speaking on the civil war in Sudan, the Egyptian foreign minister said Egypt fully supports a permanent ceasefire.
Furthermore, Shoukry reaffirmed Egypt’s complete rejection of the Israeli occupation’s practices in the Palestinian territories.
He added that Egypt is working to achieve peace in Sudan, Libya, Syria, and Yemen "following the principles of international law and the resolutions of international legitimacy.”
Moreover, the Egyptian foreign minister stressed that Egypt supports the Palestinian right to establish a Palestinian state according to the 1967 borders.
Shoukry also asserted that Egypt supports efforts to combat terrorism in Africa through a comprehensive approach in accordance with the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Strategy.
In addition, he stressed Egypt's commitment to expanding representation in the UN Security Council and restoring confidence in the global economy, noting that international efforts should be combined to reform the global financial structure and develop financing systems.
The Egyptian foreign minister also called for supporting developing countries through affordable and innovative financing mechanisms and taking immediate steps to prevent a global debt crisis for developing economies.
“During COP 27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, we succeeded in inducing countries to achieve consensus on climate justice,” Shoukry said, adding that Egypt is committed to a just transition to a green economy.
He noted, however, that the world needs to be on the track of addressing climate challenges.