Egypt Denies Excluding Sudan from Dam Talks

Men fish from boats during low tide on the river Nile in Cairo, Egypt, November 19, 2015. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh/File Photo
Men fish from boats during low tide on the river Nile in Cairo, Egypt, November 19, 2015. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh/File Photo
TT

Egypt Denies Excluding Sudan from Dam Talks

Men fish from boats during low tide on the river Nile in Cairo, Egypt, November 19, 2015. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh/File Photo
Men fish from boats during low tide on the river Nile in Cairo, Egypt, November 19, 2015. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh/File Photo

Egypt’s Foreign Ministry denied on Wednesday reports that Egypt had asked to exclude Sudan from the tripartite negotiations on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which Ethiopia is building along the Nile River.

Cairo says the dam threatens its historic share of fresh water.

Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid denied the claims circulating on Ethiopian news media that Egypt requested the exclusion of Sudan from negotiations.

“This news is totally false and unfounded” Abu Zeid stressed according to the Egyptian Foreign Ministry website on Facebook.

“On the contrary, the proposal made by Egypt to request the participation of the World Bank as a neutral party in the negotiations of the Tripartite Technical Committee, submitted by Egypt to the Sudanese government --Egypt is waiting for the response of both Ethiopia and Sudan to the proposal, “he added.

The spokesman warned against media circulating false news.

Cairo fears that the construction of the huge Ethiopian renaissance dam will reduce the flow of Nile water, which supplies about 90 percent of Egypt's needs.

In March 2015, the leaders of the three countries signed a memorandum of understanding obliging them to reach consensus through cooperation.

The $5 billion dam, built on the Blue Nile, is expected to become Africa's largest power-generating dam.

The Blue Nile, the largest part of its water in Ethiopia, meets the White Nile in Khartoum to form the Nile that crosses Sudan and Egypt before it flows into the Mediterranean.

In a statement last week, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi stressed the importance of continued communication between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan on the dam after proposing the participation of experts from the World Bank to resolve the dispute.

During Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry’s December 26 visit to Ethiopia, Egypt submitted a proposal requesting introducing the World Bank as a neutral mediator in negotiations.

The proposal was conveyed in a letter from Sisi to Ethiopian Prime Minister Haile Meriam Desaline, and Egypt awaits the response of both Addis Ababa and Khartoum on the proposal, according to an Abu Zeid press statement on Wednesday.



UN Security Council Demands Halt to Siege of El Fasher in Sudan

A fire rages in a market area in El Fasher, the capital of Sudan's North Darfur state. The Sudanese conflict has continued for 14 months.
A fire rages in a market area in El Fasher, the capital of Sudan's North Darfur state. The Sudanese conflict has continued for 14 months.
TT

UN Security Council Demands Halt to Siege of El Fasher in Sudan

A fire rages in a market area in El Fasher, the capital of Sudan's North Darfur state. The Sudanese conflict has continued for 14 months.
A fire rages in a market area in El Fasher, the capital of Sudan's North Darfur state. The Sudanese conflict has continued for 14 months.

The UN Security Council on Thursday demanded a halt to the siege of El Fasher - a city of 1.8 million people in Sudan's North Darfur region - by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and an immediate end to fighting in the area.
The 15-member council adopted a British-drafted resolution that also calls for the withdrawal of all fighters who threaten the safety and security of civilians in El Fasher.
The UN said the resolution also calls for “an immediate halt to the fighting” and “withdrawal of all fighters that threaten the safety and security of civilians.”
The resolution received 14 votes in favor, while Russia abstained.
Russia’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN, Anna Evstigneeva, explained that her country abstained from voting because a previous resolution on the occasion of the holy month of Ramadan, which had been pushed through the Council in March, remained on paper.
UK Ambassador Barbara Woodward said she tabled this resolution “to help secure a localized ceasefire around El Fasher and create the wider conditions to support de-escalation across the country and, ultimately, save lives.”
Also, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield urged the Security Council to support efforts to bring about an immediate end to the fighting, by putting pressure on the warring parties to stop blocking humanitarian access and aid.
She said over 25 million Sudanese are in dire need of humanitarian assistance, and she and many council members urged that more crossings be opened — and that donors come forward.
Thomas-Greenfield then accused the RSF of obstructing the delivery of aid. She warned that the continuation of the conflict in Sudan would lead to further destabilization.
The conflict in Sudan broke out in April 2023 between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the RSF, leading to the world's largest displacement crisis.
El Fasher is the last major urban center in Darfur that remains in the hands of Sudan's army.
The RSF and its allies raided four other state capitals in Darfur last year, and was accused of launching a campaign of ethnically motivated killings targeting non-Arab tribes, and of committing other abuses in West Darfur.
Last April, UN officials warned that the violence poses an extreme and immediate danger to the 800,000 civilians who reside in El Fasher.
In Sudan, the UN says half of the population, 25 million people, need humanitarian aid, and that the war uprooted around 8 million people while famine is closing in.