June 21, 2016 at 10:56 am
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is reported to have asked the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to intervene and help solve his country’s dispute with Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam crisis.
The Al-Araby Al-Jadeed newspaper reported Arab diplomatic sources as saying on Monday: “Sisi has recently asked Netanyahu to help Egypt resolve its dispute with Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam, due to Ethiopia’s intransigence and refusal to respond to the Egyptian calls to coordinate efforts during the construction and storage stages.”
The sources added that al-Sisi’s move came after Ethiopia rejected all pressures exerted by Arab parties, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, because Addis Ababa believes “the national project will help lift its deteriorating economy”.
The sources said that Egypt has finally resorted to asking Israel for assistance, a strategic ally of Ethiopia and a number of Nile Basin countries.
Speaking to the newspaper, an Egyptian diplomat warned against al-Sisi’s move, saying it could lead to the transfer of the Nile water to Israel, explaining that current and former Israeli leaders have been calling for this since the signing of the Camp David agreement.
Addis Ababa and Tel Aviv enjoy close ties on the economic side, with Israel having provided a range of grants to Ethiopia over the past years.