World Egypt, Sudan reject Ethiopian proposal for data sharing on Renaissance dam
Ethiopia to go on filling Nile mega-dam despite impasse: minister
Ethiopia said Wednesday it would not be deterred from impounding water at its Nile mega-dam, despite a persistent impasse with downstream countries worried about their water supply. Downstream neighbours Egypt and Sudan view the dam as a threat because of their dependence on Nile waters, while Ethiopia considers it essential for its electrification and development. The latest round of talks concluded Tuesday in Kinshasa with no resolution to long-running disputes over how the dam will be operated.
CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt and Sudan on Saturday rejected an Ethiopian proposal to share data on the operations of its giant hydropower dam on the Blue Nile after negotiations between the three countries in Kinshasa this week ended without progress.
Ethiopia is pinning its hopes of economic development and power generation on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which Egypt fears will imperil its supply from the Nile. Sudan is also concerned about the impact on its own water flows.
Nile dam talks extended in Kinshasa after draft communique setback
Talks gathering Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan on Addis Ababa's contested dam on the Nile were being extended on Tuesday after Sudan objected to the terms of a draft communique, a Congolese mediator said. Hosted by the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in Kinshasa, the meeting bringing together foreign ministers from the three countries began on Sunday and had been scheduled to end on Monday. "Ethiopia and Egypt accepted the terms contained in the draft final communique. But Sudan felt that its interests in the River Nile were at threat," said the DRC source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“Ethiopia invites Sudan and Egypt to nominate dam operators for data exchange before the filling of GERD in upcoming rainy seasons,” the Ethiopian foreign ministry wrote in a tweet on Saturday.
But Cairo and Khartoum maintained that they are seeking a legally binding agreement over the operations of the dam, which Addis Ababa says is crucial to its economic development.
“Sudan believes that exchanging information is a necessary procedure, but that the Ethiopian offer to do so in the manner indicated by their letter implies suspicious selectivity in dealing with what has been agreed upon,” the Sudanese irrigation ministry said on Saturday.
After the Kinshasa meeting, Ethiopia emphasized that the second-year filling of the dam reservoir would be carried out as scheduled.
Tigray: Analysis of massacre video raises questions for Ethiopian Army
Through a forensic frame-by-frame investigation of the video -- corroborated by analysis from Amnesty International -- as well as interviews with 10 family members and local residents, CNN has established that men wearing Ethiopian army uniforms executed a group of at least 11 unarmed men before disposing of their bodies near Mahibere Dego. Dawit said he last saw his 23-year-old brother -- in the same clothes he is seen wearing in the video -- at their mother's house in Mahibere Dego on January 15.
Sudan will hold 600 million cubic meters (785 million cubic yards) of water at its Jebel Awliya reservoir to “ensure the continued operation of the pump stations on the White Nile and the Nile river to meet agricultural and drinking water needs” in preparation for Ethiopia’s second fill, Sudan’s state news agency SUNA reported on Saturday.
The Egyptian irrigation minister on Saturday told a local television talk show that while reserves at the Aswan High Dam could help stave off the effects of a second fill, his chief concern was drought management.
Sudan and Egypt had proposed including the European Union, the United States and the United Nations as mediators in addition to ongoing African Union facilitation of the talks. Both countries said Ethiopia rejected the proposal during the Kinshasa meeting.
(Reporting by Nadine Awadalla; editing by Jonathan Oatis)
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