Egypt Receives GCC Support to Maintain Water Security

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam near the Blue Nile spring. (Reuters)
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam near the Blue Nile spring. (Reuters)
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Egypt Receives GCC Support to Maintain Water Security

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam near the Blue Nile spring. (Reuters)
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam near the Blue Nile spring. (Reuters)

Egypt has recently received support from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) States in its dispute with Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile River.

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said his GCC counterparts underlined the importance of preserving Egypt’s water interests, and said they understand that the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue is considered significant for Cairo.

This came during the meeting of the political consultation mechanism between Egypt and the GCC countries in Riyadh on Sunday.

Egypt and 10 other downstream countries share the Nile basin, yet more than 85 percent of its share comes from the Blue Nile tributary in Ethiopia.

Around 80 percent of the construction works have been completed so far, and Addis Ababa completed the second phase of filling the dam in August, which is a cause of concern to Egypt and Sudan that fear the dam’s impact on their water shares.

Cairo and Khartoum demand that the three countries reach a legally binding agreement to fill and operate the dam.

For nearly a decade, the African Union-sponsored talks between Cairo, Addis Ababa and Khartoum over the operation and filling of the mega-dam have faltered.

In mid-September, the UN Security Council called on the three countries to resume negotiations under the auspices of the AU, stressing the need to reach a “binding agreement on the filling and operation of the GERD” within a reasonable timetable.

The foreign ministers announced launching a consultation and coordination mechanism on regional and international issues, aimed at supporting and enhancing security and stability in the region and the world.

Following the meeting, Shoukry issued press statements affirming the GCC support and solidarity with Egypt in defending its national interests and reaching a binding legal agreement on GERD.

Egypt and the GCC states agreed to formulate a common vision that supports all issues and challenges facing the Arab region, and bolsters solidarity and joint action among all Arab countries.



Israel Strikes Gaza, Yemen, Lebanon Foes after Attacks

Smoke rises from a building hit by an Israeli strike in Nuseirat in the central Gaza Strip on July 20, 2024, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas. (Photo by Eyad BABA / AFP)
Smoke rises from a building hit by an Israeli strike in Nuseirat in the central Gaza Strip on July 20, 2024, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas. (Photo by Eyad BABA / AFP)
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Israel Strikes Gaza, Yemen, Lebanon Foes after Attacks

Smoke rises from a building hit by an Israeli strike in Nuseirat in the central Gaza Strip on July 20, 2024, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas. (Photo by Eyad BABA / AFP)
Smoke rises from a building hit by an Israeli strike in Nuseirat in the central Gaza Strip on July 20, 2024, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas. (Photo by Eyad BABA / AFP)

The Middle East was reeling Sunday from deadly violence with Israel bombing Gaza, Lebanon and Yemen in quick succession in response to attacks from Iran-backed militant groups.
Despite Washington's top diplomat asserting a deal is near the "goal line" to end more than nine months of devastating war between Israel and Gaza rulers Hamas, the Israeli military said it intercepted a missile fired from Yemen, as it pressed on with its offensive in the besieged Palestinian territory, Agence France Presse reported.
Dozens have been killed since Saturday across the Gaza Strip, the civil defense agency said, including in strikes on homes in the central Nuseirat and Bureij areas and displaced people near southern Khan Yunis.
Residents said a major operation was underway in the district of Rafah in the south, reporting heavy artillery and clashes.
The deadly strikes in Gaza came hours after Hezbollah and its ally Hamas said they fired at Israeli positions from south Lebanon, while Yemen's Houthi group vowed to respond to Israeli warplanes hitting a key port.
The fire left raging by the strikes on Hodeida port "is seen across the Middle East and the significance is clear," Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said.
Detailing the first strikes claimed by Israel in Yemen, Gallant warned of further operations if the Houthis "dare to attack us" after a Houthi drone strike killed one in Tel Aviv on Friday.
In Hodeida three people were killed and 87 wounded, health officials said in a statement carried by Houthi media.
Netanyahu travels to Washington
The trio of militant groups has vowed to keep up attacks on Israel until a truce ends the violence in Gaza, which lies in ruins, with most residents forced to flee their homes.
The Gaza war was triggered by Hamas's October 7 attack on southern Israel, which resulted in the deaths of 1,195 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli figures.
The militants also seized 251 hostages, 116 of whom are still in Gaza, including 42 the Israeli military says are dead.
Israel's military retaliation to wipe out Hamas has killed at least 38,919 people, also mostly civilians, according to data from the health ministry in Hamas-ruled Gaza.
The war has also unleashed hunger and health crises in Gaza, with Israel and the United Nations trading blame for vital aid supplies failing to reach those in need.
After the detection of poliovirus in Gaza sewage, though no individual cases, the World Health Organization said there were "monumental" constraints to mounting a timely response.
WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier said Friday the agency believes many more diseases are "spreading out of control" inside Gaza.
The premier is due to address US lawmakers Wednesday in Washington, where he will be under pressure to reach a ceasefire with Hamas.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Friday a truce was within reach.
"I believe we're... driving toward the goal line in getting an agreement that would produce a ceasefire, get the hostages home, and put us on a better track to trying to build lasting peace and stability," he said.