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Talks on Ethiopia’s dam will resume within days: Sudan

The Grand Renaissance Dam is under construction on the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia. (Photo AFP/William Lloyd-George)
July 2, 2020 (KHARTOUM) -Talks on the first filling of the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) will resume within days, said Sudan’s irrigation minister on Thursday.

"The Sudanese negotiating team continues its preparations to resume negotiations on the Ethiopian Renaissance Dam over the next few days," Yasir Abbas told the official news agency SUNA.

During a Khartoum hosted meetings, the three parties settled over 90% of the technical issues however they failed on the binding status of the would agreement.

This time, the discussions will resume under the auspice of the African Union after the intervention of Cyril Ramaphosa South African President and AU chairman.

Abbas said that the African Union is preparing a list of African experts, to join the talks as observers besides South Africa, the European Union and the United States of America.

He further said that the Sudanese team is ready to resume negotiations on the outstanding points based on the numerous Sudanese initiatives presented during the previous rounds of talks.

Sudan seeks to bring the two other parties to conclude an agreement on the filling of the dam and refused Egypt’s request to include a water-sharing deal in the discussions.

Also, Sudan refuses an Ethiopian offer to include sign an agreement on the technical coordination between the GERD and the Sudanese dam on the Blue Nile before to settle the dispute over the dam’s filling.

For its part, Ethiopia says that keen to begin the process which will take several years during the wet season this year stressing that delaying the filling for the next year will be very costly.

(ST)