On Tuesday, Egypt and Sudan made clear that the latest round of talks with Ethiopia over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) in Kinshasa have ended with no results. Amid efforts to break a deadlock in talks over the project, delegations from the three countries met in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Essentially, Ethiopia says the project is key to its economic development and power generation, while Egypt fears the dam will imperil its supplies of Nile water and Sudan is concerned about the dam's safety and water flows through its own dams and water stations.
Before the meetings even started, Egypt had said these represented the last chance to restart negotiations before Ethiopia begins to fill the dam for the second year in a row after seasonal rains begin this summer.
Mariam al-Sadig al-Mahdi, Sudan's Foreign Minister, said that Ethiopia's insistence on such unilateral moves represents a violation of international law: "This Ethiopian intransigence requires Sudan to consider all possible options to protect its security and its citizens.”
After the Kinshasa meeting, Ethiopia emphasized that the second-year filling of the dam reservoir would be carried out as scheduled and expressed its readiness to facilitate data and information exchange on the filling.
Sudan and Egypt were aligned on a proposal to include the European Union, United States and United Nations as mediators, as an addition to current African Union facilitation of talks. Both countries said Ethiopia rejected the proposal during the meeting, as well as other suggestions to restart negotiations.