‘Arab League intervention in dam dispute not new’

Advertisement

Last week, the foreign ministers of the Arab region countries joined calls for intervention of UN Security Council in the dam issue….reports Asian Lite News

The role of the Arab League in the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue is not new, according to Secretary-General of the League Ahmed Aboul Gheit, it was reported.

He also said that here was an Ethiopian attempt to claim that there was an Arab-African clash over the matter, the Arab News reported citing a local TV report.

The secretary-general explained in television statements to the local Sada Al-Balad TV channel that the Doha meeting raised important points, the first of which was that the water security of Egypt and Sudan was part of Arab national security and the second was the request of the Security Council to hold a meeting about the issue, it was reported.

He said that the intervention of the Arab League in the issue of the Renaissance Dam was not new. It had previously formed a committee consisting of several countries, in addition to the league’s envoy at the UN, to follow up on the issue.

He said that there was an urgent need for a member state of the Security Council to adopt the demand for holding a session on the issue, similar to Tunisia, explaining that the matter would come at the request of Egypt or Sudan.

Aboul Gheit said that there was an Ethiopian attempt to claim that there was an Arab-African clash, explaining that this was not the case, especially since Egypt and Sudan were part of Africa, and two-thirds of Arabs lived in Africa, according to the report appeared in the Arab News.

Last week, the foreign ministers of the Arab region countries joined calls for intervention of UN Security Council in the dam issue.

The decision came during a diplomatic meeting in Qatar called by downstream Nile countries Egypt and Sudan, the Arab News reported.

Earlier, Egypt’s Foreign Ministry said Friday it had sent a letter to the Security Council to explain its position. It accused Ethiopia of failing to help reach a “fair, balanced and legally binding” agreement in previous talks overseen by the African Union.

Decade-long negotiations failed to reach an agreement regulating the filling and operation of the dam, including those hosted earlier by the US and recently by the African Union.

Egypt and Sudan currently seek to form an international quartet that includes the African Union, the US, the European Union and the UN to mediate in the tripartite GERD talks.

But the proposal has been rejected by Ethiopia.

In February, Ethiopia said it would carry on with the second-phase 13.5-billion-cubic-metre filling of the GERD in June.

The volume of the first-phase filling finished last year was 4.9 billion cubic metres.

Ethiopia, which started building the GERD in 2011, expects to produce more than 6,000 megawatts of electricity from the dam project.

Egypt and Sudan, both downstream Nile Basin countries, are concerned that the dam might affect their share of the water resources.

ALSO READ: Dubai court appoints experts to oversee Arabtec’s liquidation