FILE - The United Nations Security Council Chamber in New York – Flickr/Patrick Gruban
CAIRO – 26 June 2020: The Presidency of the United Nations Security Council, held by France this month, said an open session on Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam issue will take place on Monday, June 29, Sky News reported.
Egypt on June 19 decided to request the United Nations Security Council’s intervention in the dispute on Ethiopia’s massive dam, after Egypt said several times that the two countries have been deadlocked over the dam.
The open discussion will be attended by representatives from Egypt, Sudan and probably Ethiopia.
Egypt has referred the GERD issue to the Security Council after Egypt’s Water Resources Minister Mohamed Abdel Aaty said talks to resolve differences on filling and operating GERD were concluded, after failing to persuade Ethiopia to refer the issue to the prime ministers of the three countries as a last chance to reach an agreement.
Abdel Aaty said the discussions have not achieved any significant progress, due to Ethiopia’s “rigid” stances on the technical and legal sides.
Ethiopia has refused to allow the three states to conclude a binding agreement that is consistent with international law and affirmed sticking to reaching only guidelines that Ethiopia can amend individually, the minister said.
Ethiopia also sought to obtain an absolute right to establish projects on the upper reaches of the Blue Nile River, Abdel Aaty said. It also refrained from agreeing on including a binding legal mechanism to settle disputes and effective procedures to face drought in the GERD agreement.
By referring the issue to the Security Council, in accordance with articles 34 and 35 of the United Nations Charter, Egypt requests the council to undertake its responsibilities in preserving international peace and security and pressurize Ethiopia into committing itself to the international law on international watercourses and refraining from filling the dam’s reservoir before a tripartite agreement is reached, Hassan Abu Taleb, a member of the advisory board of the state-run Egyptian Center for Strategic Studies wrote in state’s Al-Ahram earlier.
“What matters is that the world should know the significance of the problem that Ethiopia is causing, the extent of harm that Egyptians are suffering and the extent of legal and moral violations which accompany the Ethiopian stance insisting on unilateral acts on Nile water,” Abu Taleb said, adding that this stance would create chaos in the region as a whole.
Abu Taleb said the world should also see Egypt’s keenness to stick to political settlements through negotiations, in a way that serve the joint interests and commitments without bias and know that issues of life and death cannot be accepted as a fait accompli and that the harmed country does have the right to protect its rights by all possible means.
Additional reporting by Amr Kandil