AU announces failure of latest tripartite talks on Ethiopia dam

January 11, 2021

The African Union on Sunday announced the failure of the latest round of talks between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), official Sudan news agency (SUNA) reported.

Naledi Pandor, the international relations and cooperation minister of South Africa, current chair of the African Union, expressed regret over the deadlock the talks have reached, SUNA said.

Pandor said she would refer the matter to South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, current chairperson of the African Union, for necessary measures.

Meanwhile, Sudanese Irrigation and Water Resources Minister Yasir Abbas said Sudan cannot continue with the negotiations without an agreement.

“We cannot continue with this vicious cycle of circular talks indefinitely given the direct threat posed by the GERD to (Sudan’s) Roseires Dam, the storage capacity of which is less than 10 percent of that of the GERD, if it is filled and operated without agreement or daily exchange of data,” Abbas was quoted by SUNA as saying.

Sudan has filed a strong protest to Ethiopia and the African Union, sponsor of the GERD talks, over the letter sent by the Ethiopian irrigation minister to the African Union, Sudan and Egypt on January 8 in which he announced Ethiopia’s intention to continue filling the GERD on July 2 regardless of an agreement or not.

Earlier in the day, a six-party meeting of ministers of foreign affairs and irrigation of Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia was convened, chaired by South Africa, to discuss their differences on GERD in order to reach a binding deal regarding the rules of filling and operation of the dam.

Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia have been negotiating under the mediation of the African Union over technical and legal issues related to the filling and operation of the GERD.

The Sudanese negotiators believe that the GERD talks should go beyond the level of irrigation ministers to the level of the African Union and the leaders of the three countries to provide political will to bring their positions closer.

Ethiopia, which started building the GERD in 2011, expects to produce more than 6,000 megawatts of electricity from the project, while Egypt and Sudan, downstream Nile Basin countries that rely on the river for its fresh water, are concerned that the dam might affect their water resources.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency


  1. The Ethiopian delegates attending the GERD negotiation need to be extremely careful not to agree into selling Ethiopia’s most treasured possession for the cheapest price of the century. Ethiopia needs environmental protection experts , international business experts and global economists who got extensive experience is n their fields to weigh in, before Ethiopia’s hands are twisted into giving up her natural resources along with her electricity for a ridiculously cheap price to the African Union (AU) member countries.


  2. Discussion with the Sudan and Egypt on the Nile river is a waste of time. The Sudanese are puppets of the Egyptians. Both are already conducting covert and open military activities crossing into the Ethiopian border. Even if Ethiopia agrees to their demands and give them what they want these two countries will continue to work to destabilize Ethiopian no matter what they are given or agreed and signed between the nations.
    Egyptians see themselves as Europeans. I have had chances to sit with our Egyptian brothers and sisters on world stage. When asked where they are from they usually say from ” the Middle East”. They think and operate as their colonial masters the British. The difference between the British and the Egyptians is one thing. The British moved on knowing time is against their sadistic tactics they employed to pillage and control half of the world. Whereas, the Egyptians are stuck in the same mindset from the 19th century.
    The Sudan was on war footing with the Egyptians about two years ago on border issues on Bir al-Tawil and Halayeb triangle. Now they say they are claiming their land from Ethiopia. The Sudan does not have the power or the economic sustenance to get into a prolonged war with Ethiopia. The Egyptians are not in a better position either. The strategy of the Ethiopian government must be to tell the whole world its stand and what the Sudanese and the Egyptians are doing to destabilize the country from within and outside. The next step will be to know the military capability of the two countries and find a way to neutralize their attack in any means possible. It is my view the conflict about the Nile water flow is an excuse to destabilize Ethiopia for good. One of the tools they were using was the TPLF. They are no more! In the end any agreement that will be signed between Ethiopia and the two belligerent nations will not hold. This is not the time to fall asleep or to get lazy what so ever. It is time to sharpen the tool and get ready to defend the boundaries and aspirations of the country. What the Egyptians and the Sudanese are doing with these fruitless negotiation is buying time and frustrating Ethiopians. Do not go to these wasteful meetings unless certain preconditions are met. The end result must be a win win solution. Ethiopia must do its homework and prepared itself for this certain conflict by enforcing border towns and having a preplanned evacuation as well as preparing to absorb the millions of workers and refugees that might be coming from these Arab countries. For those Ethiopians who are stuck in the Sudan and Egypt and even in other Arab countries try to flee while there is a way out. You maybe in deep trouble and little chance to escape once an open conflict begins.

  3. The only solution to the never-ending animosity of Egypt and Sudan towards Ethiopia is to reduce the flow of Blue Nile to a trickle when it leaves Ethiopia’s border. It can be achieved by diiging millions of big holes on all the watersheds that aren’t cultivated so as to contain the floods. This can be achieved by mobilizing our people, especially the farmers.
    Then they will know what drought is and live within their means.
    Secondly, Ethiopia must make every able-bodied person combat ready. That is the only insurance for its survival. Because Ethiopia is surrounded by enemies, its guiding principle must be might is right.

  4. Patriot H.E. Dr. Seleshi has been rightfully telling Sudan and Egypt that the filling of the dam be it the 2nd, 3rd or whatever will take place with or without an agreement. This is just like telling a home owner that you turn of the faucet in the kitchen without getting an approval from your neighbors. What is next from Sudan and Egypt? Demanding the suspension of tree planting anywhere in Ethiopia? I bet you they are talking about that too. Ok, Obbo Seleshi told these two that the dam will continued to be filled during the heavy rain days when it pours in buckets, then what? What will these two do? I have said this many times before. If the dam is violently disturbed, that will a grievous mistake by Sudan and Egypt. You see, there is so much silt already built up around the dam now that in case of a violent incidence it creates what is called an alluvial tsunami which forces a river to flow backwards in a direction it came from. Then Sudan and Egypt can say kiss and good bye to the old man Aman Dawu forever!!!! You know what I mean?

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