For some time now, Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia have not been on the best of terms. This started with Ethiopia planning a great project for what would have become one of the greatest dams in the world. It is known as the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, also called GERD. Ethiopia wanted to establish this dam for several reasons. One of the main reasons why Ethiopia built this dam was to improve the economy of the state. Moreover, it established GERD to increase the supply of hydroelectric power for running industries and the economy as a whole. This coincided with the Prime Minister’s, Abiy Ahmed, vision for Ethiopia in that he wanted to bring great economic and security reforms to the country.
Despite the GERD is a great project, the downstream states (Egypt and Sudan) had their worries. Egypt relies on the Nile for 90% of its fresh water and irrigation needs. On the other hand, Sudan believed that the great dam would pose a danger to its dams. Therefore, the two states wanted to talk with Ethiopia over the dam. This process has not been easy since Ethiopia is not ready to come to a binding agreement with the 2 countries despite them pushing Ethiopia to come to an agreement. Sudan was ready and willing to sign a partial interim agreement concerning the dam not long ago but on terms.
Sudan involves United Nations Security Council
Sudan has requested a meeting of the United Nations Security Council to discuss a dispute over a massive dam which Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile. Sudan’s Foreign Minister, Mariam Sadiq al-Mahdi, requested that the UN Security Council convene as soon as possible to discuss the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and its impact on the safety and security of millions of people. This is according to a government statement.
In a letter, al-Mahdi urged the United Nations Security Council head to urge Ethiopia to halt the dam’s unilateral filling, which exacerbates the dispute and poses a threat to regional and international security and peace. Ethiopian officials have not yet made any comments on the letter.
Arab League vs Ethiopia
Arab states have requested that the UN Security Council discuss the dispute and Ethiopia’s plans to proceed with the dam’s second filling this summer despite the lack of an agreement with Egypt and Sudan. However, Ethiopia has vehemently opposed the Arab League resolution.
Maged Abdel Fattah, the Arab League’s UN envoy, stated yesterday evening that Sudan and Egypt are working on a draft Security Council resolution on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam if Ethiopia doesn’t reach an agreement. Arab states will push the Security Council to approve the draft resolution, according to Fattah, who also stated that he does not expect world powers to prevent it.
As the 3 countries continue with their feud, there is hope that it may come to an end. This is due to Egypt and Sudan involving other parties, which may result in a positive outcome.