Ethiopia asks Algeria to correct Arab League’s 'misperceptions' about GERD

Zeinab El-Gundy , Thursday 29 Jul 2021

Addis Abbas has also asked Algeria to mediate in its border dispute with Sudan

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen meets Minister of Foreign Affairs of Algeria Ramtane Lamamra in Addis Abba on Thursday (Photo : Ethiopian Ministry foreign affairs)

Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen has asked that Algeria play a role in “correcting” what he described as the Arab League's “misperceptions” about the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

Mekonnen made the request on Wednesday to Algerian counterpart Ramtane Lamamra.

Mekonnen asked Lamamra, who is currently on a visit to Addis Abbas, to correct the Arab League’s perceptions about the GERD issue, “underscoring Ethiopia’s intentions to fair and equitable utilisation of the Nile water,” the Ethiopian foreign ministry said in a statement on the meeting.

In June, the Arab League issued a resolution after convening in Doha, rejecting any measures that would undermine the water share of Egypt and Sudan, in reference to Ethiopia’s second filling in July despite of the lack of an agreement between the three countries on the filling and operations of the dam.

The Arab League had also called for the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to intervene in the crisis, which it said risks aggravated tensions in the region.

At the time, Ethiopia denounced the resolution, expressing its dismay at “the misguided position” of the regional organisation.

The Ethiopian deputy prime minister also expressed in the meeting with Lamamra Ethiopia’s firm commitment to resuming the trilateral negotiations under the auspices of the African Union.

Demeke also said that Ethiopia concluded the second filling last week in accordance with the Declaration of Principles (DoP) that was signed in 2015.

Both Egypt and Sudan have said that the first and second filling of the dam, in 2020 and 2021 respectively, actually violate the 2015 DoP.

Ethiopia has also asked Algeria to persuade Sudan to solve their border issue peacefully according to existing joint mechanisms and refrain from using force, “since it would never settle the matter amicably.”

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