DUBAI: Egyptian foreign minister Sameh Shoukry said on Thursday that it was essential to resolve the Renaissance Dam issue before the onset of the next flood season.
Shoukry said during a discussion with Josep Borrell, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs, that Ethiopia’s decision to unilaterally fill the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam will have negative repercussions and stressed the importance of global involvement to resolve the case, news channel Al-Arabiya reported.
Meanwhile, Borrell tweeted that the “EU will keep working closely… with Egypt for a prosperous neighbourhood.”
I spoke last evening with #Egypt FM Shoukry. Good and open discussion on regional developments incl #GERD, Libya & bilateral relations in view of the new Agenda for the Mediterranean. EU will keep working closely engaging with #Egypt for a prosperous neighbourhood.@MfaEgypt
— Josep Borrell Fontelles (@JosepBorrellF) March 11, 2021
Egypt last month said it has endorsed a Sudanese proposal to internationalize arbitration in the years-long dispute with Ethiopia over the dam that Addis Ababa is building on the Blue Nile.
Shuokry said Cairo backs the formation of an “international quartet” including the US, the European Union, and the UN, along with the African Union to facilitate reaching a deal on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam.
The dispute centers on how much water Ethiopia will release downstream if a multi-year drought occurs and how the three countries would settle any future disputes. Egypt and Sudan also call for a legally binding agreement on the dam’s filling and operation, while Ethiopia insists on guidelines.