Saturday, August 15, 2020
banner
Home /  World  /  Ethiopia denies filling Nile dam without Egyptian agreement

Ethiopia denies filling Nile dam without Egyptian agreement

Ethiopia denies filling Nile dam without Egyptian agreement

DPA
Addis Ababa
Ethiopia on Wednesday denied reports it is filling the reservoir of Africa’s largest dam on the Nile without agreement from downstream Egypt and Sudan.
Water had solely increased in the 4.6-billion-dollar Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) due to seasonal, heavy rainfall, Ethiopian Minister of Water and Irrigation Seleshi Bekele told dpa.
“There is a lot of water going through. There is heavy rainfall and the inflow is much greater than the outflow,” Seleshi said.
The increased water level had caused various local and international media to report that Ethiopia has started to fill the dam on Wednesday.
Sudan’s Water Ministry responded to the reports late on Wednesday, saying relevant agencies had measured water levels of the Blue Nile and confirmed they were down.
“It was evident from the flow meters in the Dimim border station with Ethiopia that there is a retreat in the water levels, equivalent to 90 million cubic meters per day, confirming the closure of the gates of the Renaissance Dam,” a statement said.
Sudan would continue to closely monitor the developments and act to protect its national interest, the statement added, before condemning any unilateral action.
The dam, which Ethiopia has been building since 2010 on the Blue Nile, has long caused animosity with Egypt.
Recently, decade-long arduous talks involving the two downstream countries, Egypt and Sudan, reached a deadlock, with Egypt turning to the UN Security Council in June.
Egypt seeks a legally binding deal that would guarantee the appropriate flows of water and a legal mechanism for resolving disputes before the dam starts operating. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi also warned Ethiopia against going it alone. The country considers Ethiopia’s threat to fill the 74-billion-cubic-metre reservoir this month both unacceptable and illegal.
Ethiopia wants the hydroelectric dam in order to expand its power exports, whereas Egypt relies almost exclusively on the Nile for farming, industry and domestic water use.
It is concerned that the GERD’s sluices will control water flow in ways that will make life difficult for Egyptians.
Ethiopia says Egyptian concerns are baseless.

Pages