Nile nations reopen talks on divisive dam

APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia)

Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt have resumed talks on filling the reservoir of the controversial hydroelectric dam being built on Nile river after the failure of a U.S-led mediation earlier this year.

The three countries have been at odds over the filling and operation of the over $4 billion Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), under construction near Ethiopia's border with Sudan on the Blue Nile, which flows into the Nile river.

The resumption of the tripartite talks via video conference thanks to the coronavirus was initiated by Khartoum in order to reach a comprehensive and satisfactory deal that meets the interests of all parties involved.

The talks began on Tuesday in the presence of observers from South Africa, the European Union (EU) and the United States, according to Ethiopia's Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Energy.

The ministry said the water ministers of the three countries dwelt on issues related to procedures, role of observers, measures required to continue negotiation and unresolved outstanding issues.

“Understanding is reached to continue the tripartite meeting in the coming days,” the ministry said in a statement.

The meeting is in progress on the first filling and annual operation of the GERD, it was indicated.

Ethiopia is set to begin the first phase of filling the dam’s reservoir next July despite Egypt's insistence that this should not be made ahead of a comprehensive deal acceptable to all three countries. 


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