Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Egyptian-Ethiopian dialogue continues - Daily News Egypt

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A picture taken on May 28, 2013 shows the Blue Nile in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony.  (AFP Photo)
A picture taken on May 28, 2013 shows the Blue Nile in Guba, Ethiopia, during its diversion ceremony.
(AFP Photo)
An Ethiopian delegation will meet Egyptian Deputy Foreign Minister for African Affairs Ali Al-Hefni on Wednesday, according to a ministry statement released on Monday.
The statement announced that meeting, convened at the invitation of The Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs, comes as part of developing bi-lateral relations in various fields including the academic field. The delegation includes both Ethiopian diplomats and academics.
State-run agency MENA reported that during its 3-day visit, the Ethiopian delegation, led by Sebhat Nega, the Executive Director of the Ethiopian International Institute for Peace and Development (EIIPD), will discuss with officials issues of mutual concern, as well as security issues faced on the African continent.
Egyptian Ambassador to Ethiopia Mohamed Idris said the delegation’s visit comes as part of the Embassy’s efforts to deal with bi-lateral relations comprehensively, he told MENA.
He added that the multiple, official, diplomatic and popular efforts that were made since the 2011 Revolution are what allowed the two countries to overcome the last crisis and start constructive dialogue.
A number of concerns have been raised by Egypt and Sudan, both downstream countries, regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam since the start of its construction in April 2011. In a ceremony in late May, the Ethiopian government began diverting waters from one of the Nile’s main tributaries, the Blue Nile.
Following his visits to Ethiopia last week, Amr addressed the Egyptian public with the message that Ethiopia has no intention in harming Egypt or Sudan. The Egyptian and Ethiopian foreign ministries said in a joint statement that Egypt and Sudan’s water security concerns and Ethiopia’s “developmental interests will be taken into consideration” when it comes to the dam.
Egypt has long received the largest share of the water from the Nile, as per agreements signed in 1929 and 1959, which guaranteed Egypt 55.5bn cubic metres of the estimated total of 84bn cubic metres of Nile water produced each year.

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