Nile dam: Ethiopia rejects Tunisia’s proposal

The authorities in Addis Ababa Thursday called on UN member states to reject Tunisia's proposal calling on Sudan, Egypt and…

The authorities in Addis Ababa Thursday called on UN member states to reject Tunisia’s proposal calling on Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia to reach a binding agreement on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).The call was led by Ethiopia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Demeke Mekonnen and Minister of Water, Irrigation, and Energy Sileshi Bekele while holding talks with ambassadors of member states of the United Nations Security Council.

Recalling that the case was referred to the Security Council in July 2021, the UN passed a resolution for the three countries to continue the tripartite talks held by the African Union and reach a solution, Mekonnen said.

Bekele said that it is inappropriate for Tunisia to refer back the resolution to the Council since it violates Ethiopia’s right to use its natural resources and maliciously tries to advance the unjust interests of downstream countries.

He called on Sudan and Egypt to abandon the status quo and the so-called “historical right” over the Nile River basin and unnecessarily politicize and internationalize the issue.

The minister urged the international community to influence the downstream states to participate in the AU-led negotiation and sign the Comprehensive Framework Agreement.

On 7 July, the UN 15-member body held a meeting to discuss the stalled talks on GERD but declined to adopt a draft resolution circulated by Tunisia which was a non-permanent of the Security Council.

The Ethiopian government described the Tunisian draft resolution as “unhelpful”.

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