Ethiopian FM Gedu Andargachew speaks about Washington Discussion, Next steps

November 8, 2019

On November 6, 2019, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan held a discussion in Washington, USA, which was initiated by the US government.  The World Bank and USA attended the discussion too.

Needless to say, it was about Ethiopia’s Mega Dam over Nile which has caused some controversies as Egypt claims that the Dam will negatively affect the volume of water that it is getting from the longest river in the world more than 84 percent of which originates from Ethiopia.

It was after the technical discussion on the filling and operation of the dam was stalled in Khartoum early last month that Egypt called for international mediation.

The Washington Discussion reportedly focused on procedures on how to continue the negation. 

The three parties issued a joint statement after the end of the discussion, pointing out that they committed themselves to reach an agreement by January  15. If that does not happen, the parties to the discussion and the agreement (Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan) agreed to invoke article 10 of the Declaration of Principle  agreement which was signed sometime in 2015. 

The development, however, triggered widespread skepticism that the United States might be patronizing Ethiopia in an effort to help out Egypt which is believed to be of  more significance to the United States from the point of view of geo-strategy that Ethiopia. 

Ethiopia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Gedu Andargachew and Seleshi Bekele, water minister, however claim that the Washington Discussion was of importance to Ethiopia as provided an opportunity to elaborate on Ethiopia’s position. 

They also spoke about the next step in the negotiation process which is pretty much the same as what has been communicated through the joint statement. Take a listen to Gedu Andargachew from the video below.

Video credit : VOA Amharic Service
Cover photo : Screenshot from video 

Ethiopia’s Water Minister, Seleshi Bekele, also shared his observation from the discussion. Watch video below.

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