“Egypt informed that Ethiopia has resumed filling the giant dam”
The Egyptian Minister of Irrigation said on Monday that he had received an official notification from Ethiopia that it had started filling the reservoir behind the giant Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, for the second year.
Irrigation Minister Mohamed Abdel-Aty said in a statement that Egypt informed Ethiopia of its categorical rejection of the measure, which it considers a threat to regional stability.
Ethiopia says the dam on the Blue Nile is important to its economic development and to provide energy for its residents.
Egypt considers the dam a serious threat to the Nile’s water supply, on which it depends almost entirely. Sudan, another country downstream, has expressed concern about the safety of the dam and its impact on its dams and waterworks.
Spokesman for the Egyptian Ministry of Irrigation, Mohamed Ghanem, told a local TV channel that the volume of accumulated water will depend on the amount of monsoon rains that fell in Ethiopia.
“We will not see any impact now on the Nile. We have a month or a month and a half,” he said.
Egypt and Sudan launched a diplomatic campaign to reach a legally binding agreement on the operation of the dam, but talks have repeatedly stalled.
Diplomatic efforts intensified before the dam was first filled last summer, and again in recent weeks.
The statement said that the UN Security Council is expected to discuss the issue on Thursday, and Abdel-Aty wrote to the council to inform it of the latest developments.
Ethiopia says it is finally exercising its rights to the Nile waters that its downstream neighbors have controlled for a long time.
Its ambassador in Khartoum said on Sunday that Egypt and Sudan already knew the details of the first three years of filling the dam and that the issue should not be brought to the Security Council because it was not a question of peace and security.