Ethiopia Slams Arab League Council Resolution on GERD

By Staff Reporter

Arab-League-CouncilMarch 6, 2020 (Ezega.com) -- The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the resolution issued by the Arab League Council regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissances Dam (GERD) has missed the real situation on the ground and did not consider previous negotiations.

The ministry’s statement comes after the Arab League Council said “it rejects any infringement of Egypt’s historical rights to the waters of the River Nile.”

“Ethiopia would safeguard its full right of utilizing the Nile water in a fair and equitable way along with other Nile basin countries and without causing significant harm on downstream countries as well as demands of the current and future generations are met, the ministry said in a statement.

Sudan expressed "reservations" over the Arab League Council’s resolution which was proposed by Egypt over a massive dam Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile.

Tensions between Cairo and Addis Ababa over GERD mounted over the past week after Addis Ababa refused to sign a deal that was reportedly crafted by the US and World Bank.

Ethiopia accused the United States of being "undiplomatic" in its efforts to resolve the dispute and expressed "disappointment" with the US remarks.

Sudan rather requested that its name not be included in the resolution and argued that the resolution does not serve its interests and expressed fears that “an Arab-Ethiopian confrontation might result from it.”

The Arab League Council has urged the Arab countries to take necessary procedures to convince Ethiopia to sign the initial agreement while Sudan said the pan-Arab bloc should not be involved in the dispute.

“Ethiopia believes that the three countries would reach to a common agreement and the statement stressed any attempt to take the upper hand at the expense of others is not acceptable,” the statement noted.

Ethiopia said it was “very unfortunate that the Arab Parliament claimed Egypt’s historical rights on the Nile waters should not be compromised while it has remained silent on the rights of Ethiopia – a country that is the source of more than 85 percent of the Nile waters.”

The Arab League Council also asserted its desire to defend the so-called historical rights of Egypt on the Nile waters while Ethiopia rubbished the council’s assertion as a complete denial of any use of the Nile water by upstream countries.

Ethiopia said upstream countries, which have not been consulted nor parties to the unjustifiable and exclusive Colonial Treaties, are not bound to them and international norm or practice does not prevent upstream countries from using the Nile River in an equitable and reasonable way

The ministry’s statement said the first filling of the GERD’s reservoir will take place in parallel with the construction of the dam based on the Declaration of Principles (DOP) the three countries signed in 2015.

Ethiopia believes the Arab league will stand with Ethiopia as time passes by and it understands the truth.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said his government will in no way enter into an agreement that gives away the country’s national interest.

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