KHARTOUM, 9 March 2021 – Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi says he has discussed with the Sudanese President ways of relaunching the negotiations over Ethiopia’s mega dam on the Nile River.
During a visit to Khartoum, El-Sisi reiterated his support for Sudan’s suggestion of forming a quartet composed of the United Nations (UN), African Union (AU), European Union (EU) and United States, to mediate talks.
“Our visions coincided on the rejection of any approach that is based on endeavours to impose a fait accompli and extend control over the Blue Nile through unilateral procedures that do not take into account the interests and rights of the two downstream countries,” El-Sisi said in response to questions from reporters.
Egypt and Sudan have reiterated their rejection of Ethiopia’s announcement to implement the second phase of filling of the reservoir of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) even if a binding legal deal is not reached between the three countries.
“This procedure may threaten [to cause] serious damage to the interests of Egypt and Sudan,” El-Sisi said in a press conference in Khartoum with Abdel-Fattah Al-Burhan, the the head of the Sudanese Transitional Sovereignty Council.
“We affirmed the necessity to return to serious and effective negotiations, with the aim of reaching a just, balanced, and legally binding agreement on the filling and operating of the dam at the earliest opportunity and before the next flood season,” El-Sisi said during the conference.
El-Sisi stressed the legal agreement must take into consideration the interests of all three countries, not just the interests of Ethiopia.
“This is the mechanism proposed by Sudan and endorsed by Egypt and which seeks to support the efforts of President Felix Tshisekedi, the President of the Democratic Republic of Congo, and to maximize the chances of success of the negotiations’ path,” El-Sisi added.