On Friday, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced the organization’s readiness to provide support and participate in a negotiating process led by an international quadripartite, on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
This came during a phone call made by Guterres with Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, according to a statement issued by Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for the Secretary-General.
Guterres confirmed the readiness of the United Nations to provide support and participate in a negotiating process led by the African Union on the Grand Renaissance Dam, at the invitation of the President of the African Union, Felix Tshisekedi.
He also expressed his hope that the full participation of the parties in serious negotiations would be a useful process, according to the same statement.
Earlier Friday, a statement by the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said that Shukri told Guterres of the need to launch a serious negotiation process under the auspices of Africa and the participation of international parties, to reach a fair, balanced and legally binding agreement for filling and operating the Renaissance Dam.
Shoukry said, during the phone call, that his country supported a proposal for Sudan to form an international quartet led by the Democratic Republic of the Congo in its capacity as the current president of the African Union, along with the United Nations, the European Union and the United States to mediate the negotiations.
The spokesman for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, Ambassador Ahmed Hafez, stated that during the call, Shoukry expressed concern about the stalled negotiations on the Renaissance Dam, which took place under the auspices of the African Union.
A few days ago, Egypt announced its support for Sudan’s proposal to form a quadripartite international mediation, to resolve the stalled Renaissance Dam negotiations.
The Sudanese Minister of Irrigation, Yasser Abbas, announced his country’s intention to conduct diplomatic and political contacts to support quadripartite mediation on the Renaissance Dam, by involving the United Nations, the European Union and the United States, along with the African Union.
But Ethiopia says it is committed to the tripartite talks with Egypt and Sudan on the crisis.
The United States and the World Bank had previously mediated more than a year ago in the Renaissance Dam negotiations, but their mediation did not produce results.
Ethiopia insists on the start of the second filling of the Renaissance Dam next July, while Khartoum and Cairo adhere to first reaching a tripartite agreement, to preserve their annual share of the Nile water, amid stalled negotiations led by the African Union for months.
The Egyptian Foreign Minister stressed that Ethiopia’s taking this step “unilaterally, will have negative effects and repercussions that must be avoided and avoided through reaching an agreement on the Grand Renaissance Dam at the earliest possible opportunity.”