Egypt categorically rejects Ethiopia’s unilateral filling of GERD in letter to UN Security Council

Sami Hegazi
Daily News

Renaissance damEgyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry submitted a letter to the president of the UN Security Council on Friday, to register Egypt’s categorical rejection of Ethiopia’s continuation of filling the mega Nile dam unilaterally without an agreement with Egypt and Sudan on the dam’s filling and operation.

The letter stressed that this is a clear violation of the 2015 Declaration of Principles agreement and a serious violation of the applicable rules of international law, which oblige Ethiopia, as an upstream country, not to harm the rights of downstream countries.

The Foreign Minister pointed out that Egypt has sought during the negotiations that have taken place over the past years to reach a fair and equitable agreement on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), but Ethiopia has failed all efforts and endeavours that have been made to resolve this crisis.

The Egyptian Foreign Minister stressed that while Egypt adheres to the need to reach an agreement on the GERD that meets the common interests of the three countries, the Egyptian state will not tolerate any violation of its rights or water security or any threat to the capabilities of the Egyptian people, for whom the Nile River is the only lifeline.

The foreign minister called on the Security Council to assume its responsibilities in this regard, including by intervening to ensure the implementation of the presidential statement issued by the council, which obliges the three countries to negotiate an agreement on the GERD at the earliest opportunity.

In this regard, the spokesperson of the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Egypt had received a letter from the Ethiopian side on July 26 stating that Ethiopia will continue to fill the Nile dam reservoir during the current flood season.

“A measure that Egypt rejects and considers contrary to the obligations imposed by international law on Ethiopia,” the spokesperson stressed.

Egypt retairates its call on Ethiopia to exercise responsibility and comply with the rules of international law and the principles governing trans-state waterways, foremost of which is avoiding significant harm.

The ministry added that Ethiopia bears full responsibility for any significant harm to Egyptian interests that may result from Ethiopia’s violation of its obligations referred to.

Egypt also reserves its legitimate right guaranteed in the UN Charter to take all necessary measures to ensure and protect its national security, including against any risks that may be caused in the future by Ethiopian unilateral measures.

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