The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the statements made by the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry spokesman regarding Egyptian internal affairs, while Addis Ababa denied the accusations of Cairo.
Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Hafez described the Ethiopian statements as a blatant and unacceptable transgression, and a crude departure from the obligations contained in the founding law of the African Union.
The spokesman said that it was more appropriate for the Ethiopian speaker, Dina Mufti, to pay attention to what he called the deteriorating humanitarian conditions in his country, which have led to the killing of hundreds and the displacement of tens of thousands of innocent citizens, especially in the regions of Tigray, Beni Shangol and Oromia.
The Egyptian Foreign Ministry had summoned the Ethiopian Chargé d’Affairs, to request clarification on the statements of the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry spokesman.
On Tuesday, Ethiopian spokesman Dina Mufti held a press conference broadcast on state television, in which he indicated that Sudan and Egypt are using differences over the Renaissance Dam as an excuse to cover up their internal problems.
The Mufti gave an example of the situation of Islamists in Egypt, saying, “I do not mean to defame, but in Cairo there was one area 10 times larger than the area of Mercato (the largest open market in Addis Ababa) and the Islamists lived in it, and it was closed (..) and referred to as a cemetery. “.
He added, “All this may explode … They know that the Renaissance Dam will not harm them, they are distancing themselves from the internal problems.”
For his part, the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry spokesman denied the accusations issued by Egypt.
He said that Ethiopia has never interfered in the affairs of another country, and that it is one of the countries most committed to the African Union and United Nations charter.
In a statement to Al-Jazeera, the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry spokesman expressed his regret at what he called Egyptian fallacies and interference in Ethiopian internal affairs.
He explained that Ethiopia refrains from responding to statements and statements as part of the smear campaigns against it, led by some of the parties that have been hostile to Addis Ababa for a long time.
Since 2011, Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia have been negotiating to reach an agreement on filling and operating the Renaissance Dam, but despite these years, they failed to do so.
Since last August, negotiations between the three countries regarding the dam that Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile has stopped and raises concerns in Egypt and Sudan over their shares of the Nile water, and negotiations have been suspended due to differences over the mechanism for mobilizing and operating the dam.
The United States, the European Union, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, in addition to the African Union, have been participating in the negotiations since the beginning of this year through experts and observers.
Ethiopia believes that the dam is necessary to achieve economic development, while Egypt considers it a vital threat to it, as the Nile River is a source of more than 95% of the country’s irrigation and drinking water.
In recent months, the dispute over the dam has escalated as Ethiopia continues to prepare to fill the reservoir, which holds 74 billion cubic meters of water.