There’s a Blockage in the Renaissance Dam Project

Ethiopia is condemning an Egyptian proposal for water allocation amid tense negotiations over the countries’ use of Nile River waters. In an Oct. 5 statement, the Ethiopian government called Egypt’s conditions for filling the massive reservoir of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam “unjustified” and disruptive to “the positive spirit of cooperation.” The countries disagree about how to divert water from the Nile. Ethiopia’s proposal calls for the reservoir to be filled over four to seven years, a slower pace than the two-to-three-year time span the country says it could pursue. But on Aug. 1, Egypt submitted a counterproposal that would require Ethiopia to receive approval at various points, a step Egypt said is necessary to avoid droughts. Ethiopia rejected the conditions, saying they reflect colonial-era laws that don’t account for the rights of upriver countries.


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