Tuesday, July 14th, 2020
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Russia offers to mediate between Ethiopia and Egypt

US-brokered “negotiation” over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) failed in late February after Ethiopia withdrew from it in light of growing public pressure against the US’ tendency to impose pro-Egypt terms of agreement on Ethiopia.
Since then there has been an unconfirmed report that Russia has an interest in mediating Ethiopia and lower riparian countries over the GERD.



On Monday, the Russian Ambassador to Ethiopia, Evgeny Terekhin, held talks with the Foreign Affairs Minister of Ethiopia, Gedu Andargachew, in Addis Ababa.
Egypt has expressed interest in a tripartite talk after Ethiopia and Sudan reached an agreement to continue talks of technical talk on the filling and operation of the GERD.
The African Union has also expressed interest in mediating the three countries to reach an agreement based on principles of mutual benefits.



Ethiopia generates over 80 percent of the Nile water and has never been using its share of the resource either for generating Hydroelectric power or agriculture.
With the growing need for generating electric power to cater to 65 percent of its population access to electricity and as part of the effort to make sufficient power available for the manufacturing sector, Ethiopia is now pursuing its rights to exercise to use its water resources while observing all relevant international laws.



Egypt has a “historical right” claim over the Nile river the basis of which is a colonial-era agreement to which Ethiopia was not a signatory.
Ethiopia said that it will start filling the dam starting July of this year. However, clearing the land which is needed to fill the dam is not yet started.


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