Home | News    Tuesday 23 March 2021

Sudan urges Ethiopia to accept four-party mediation

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A satellite image shows the GERD and the Blue Nile on 26 June 2020 (Maxar Technologies- Reuters)March 22, 2021 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan called on Ethiopia to accept its proposal for a four-party mediation on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

After over 9 years of difficult talks, Sudan proposed that the United Nations, the European Union and the United States take part in a mediation led by the African Union, which facilitated previous rounds of negotiations.

Ethiopia rejected the proposition while Egypt announced its support for it.

"We believe that international experiences under the leadership of the African Union will provide a political impetus to the stalled negotiations between the three countries (...) despite several rounds of talks," said Yasir Abbas Sudanese Minister of Irrigation in remarks at a celebration of the World Water Day, in Khartoum Monday.

"We call on Ethiopia to accept the quartet’s mediation to reach a fair and legal agreement that satisfies the three countries," he further said.

He expressed his surprise at Ethiopia’s objection to the four-party mediation, underscoring that his country had previously called on the parties to accept that the African Union experts broker the talks.

Ethiopia rejected the quadripartite mediation saying that the African Union can play this role alone. But during the past rounds, Addis Ababa rejected the African Union mediation for the talks.

On 8 January 2021, Ethiopia informed the African Union that it was resolved to fill the reservoir for the second year next July with 13.5 million cubic meters of water, whether an agreement is reached or not.

Sudan rejects the decision saying it would negatively impact its two dams and threaten the lives of 20 million Sudanese.

(ST)

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