Nile dam report inadequate, lacks detail: President Morsi

Ahram Online , Sunday 2 Jun 2013

The committee studying the impact of the Ethiopian dam recommends further studies of its impact

Boats travel in the Egyptian Nile River in Cairo May 28, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

The official spokesperson for the Egyptian presidency announced on Sunday that President Morsi had held a meeting with the Egyptian team participating in the trilateral international committee studying the effects of a controversial planned Nile dam on Egypt and Sudan.

Ethiopia announced Tuesday it will begin diverting the course of the Blue Nile, one of the Nile River’s two major tributaries, as part of its project to build the Renaissance Dam.

The majority of Nile water that reaches Egypt and Sudan originates in the Blue Nile.

The technical committee, which was comprised of members from all three countries as well as international experts, was formed in May 2012 to study the impact of the dam on Sudan and Egypt, which are downstream of Ethiopia.

According to the presidential spokesman, the report did not clarify in detail the positive or negative impacts of the dam.

The report, according to the spokesman, recommended further social and economic studies into the dam’s impact, as well as further study of the environmental impact of the dam and its potential safety.  

Morsi has commissioned government officials to provide a detailed study of the topic, including the recommendations of the committee’s report, the spokesman said.

The president also stressed the importance of acting quickly, in order to handle the situation before Ethiopia proceeds further in the dam construction process.

Morsi will hold meetings Monday with various Egyptian political figures, as well as the Cabinet, in order to discuss the latest developments and ways forward.

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