Home | News    Wednesday 16 December 2020

GERD: Sudan, Ethiopia agree to involve African experts as brokers

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Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam is seen as it undergoes construction work on the Blue Nile river in Guba Woreda, Benishangul Gumuz Region, Ethiopia on September 26, 2019. (Reuters photo)December 15, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan and Ethiopia agreed that African experts can broker the long-stalled talks on the filing of the giant hydropower dam on the Blue Nile.

The Ethiopian Irrigation Minister who arrived in Khartoum on Monday concluded discussions on their difference over the method of negotiation with his Sudanese counterpart on Tuesday.

The meeting came after an agreement on Sunday between Sudanese and Ethiopian prime ministers providing that Khartoum will resume its participation in the tripartite process over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

"It was agreed to resume negotiations in the near future, taking into account that the African Union experts would play a role in bridging the views of the three countries in consultation with the AU president and secretariat," reported the official news agency SUNA.

Sudan suspended its participation in the tripartite talks following the rejection of its proposal to involve mediators that can broker a deal, pointing to the African Union, European Union and the United States.

Before to leave the Sudanese capital, the visiting Ethiopian Minister Seleshi Bekele was received by the Prime Minister Hamdok.

During nine years, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan failed to strike an agreement on the first filing and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

In 2019, Trump administration sought to broker a deal between the three countries but Ethiopia escaped the process considering that Washington was supportive of the Egyptian position.

South Africa as the chairman of the African Union for 2020, sought to facilitate the process with the participation of the EU and the U.S. as an observer but its efforts were not successful until now.

(ST)

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