International community needs to continue serious role in GERD issue, Sisi tells UK’s PM ​

Ahram Online , Thursday 14 Oct 2021

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi affirmed on Thursday during a phone call with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson the need for the international community to continue to play a serious role in resolving the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.

Egypt s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi (L) shakes hands with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson as they met in London, 21 January 2020. Egyptian Presidency

Egypt and Sudan have expressed the desire to continue the GERD talks under the auspices of the African Union to reach a legally-binding agreement, a demand endorsed last month by a UN Security Council presidential statement. 

Egypt and Sudan have called for maximising the international role in endorsing the AU-sponsored negotiations on the GERD dispute, with Egypt calling such a role “indispensable.”

In his phone call with Johnson, El-Sisi highlighted the importance of reaching a balanced, fair, and legal agreement on the filling and operation of the dam, a statement by Egyptian presidency’s spokesman Bassam Rady read.

This, El-Sisi said, should be achieved in a way that protects Egypt’s water security, ensures the interests of all parties, and preserves regional stability.
The president also underlined the need for all parties to show good faith and the necessary political will during the negotiations in line with the UN Security Council’s presidential statement.

UN Climate change summit

During the phone call, El-Sisi and Johnson agreed on intensifying coordination between the two countries to ensure a positive outcome from the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference (COP26).

The conference is scheduled to take place from 31 October to 12 November in Glasgow, Scotland.

This comes in light of the importance of the Egyptian role in addressing the climate issues on the regional level as well as Egypt’s endeavour to host the next round of the conference in 2022, Rady said.

Egypt has been selected as a nominee to host the COP 27, scheduled for November next year, as it is Africa’s turn to host the conference.
El-Sisi and Johnson also discussed a number of regional issues of mutual concern, Rady said.

They agreed on supporting the ongoing political path in Libya and the holding of elections by the end of the year, as well as the exit of all foreign forces and mercenaries from the country.

The two leaders also discussed encouraging British tourism to Egypt, which is attempting to attract foreign tourists to its resorts in the Red Sea and South Sinai.

Two million people work in Egypt’s tourism sector, which represents a big part of the national economy and is a main source of hard currency for the country.

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