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African Union’s Tshisekedi extends GERD talks for one day

A satellite image shows the GERD and the Blue Nile on 26 June 2020 (Maxar Technologies1 Reuters)April 5, 2021 (KHARTOUM) - Congolese President FĂ©lix Antoine Tshisekedi extended for one day the talks on the Ethiopian giant dam on Monday, as the three parties failed have to reach a compromise on the mediation of the international partner.

Sky News Arabia reported from the DR Congo capital Kinshasa reported that President Tshisekedi who chairs the African Union had convinced the three parties on Monday evening to extend the talks for hours to make room for the drafting of a final statement.

The delegations led by the foreign ministers of Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt have disagreed about the role of the United States, the European Union and the United Nations in the next phase.

Sudan and Egypt call to expanding the African Union-led mediation to include the US, EU and the UN, headed by the African Union, while Ethiopia rejects this idea saying the facilitators should be selected according to the issues negotiated by the three countries.

Ethiopia had proposed splitting the agreement into two deals one on the first filling and the second on the operation of the dam. But, Khartoum rejected this proposal.

The Sky News reporter said that the role of the facilitators is the main reason for disagreement over the resumption of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

In November 2020, Sudan suspended its participation in the GERD talks. But, Khartoum accepted earlier this year to return to the negotiating table on the condition that the parties agree first on a new modality because the 9-year process has failed to conclude a deal.

(ST)