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Authorities say Ethiopia has not, will not sign an agreement that compromises national interest

Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Gedu Andargachew and Seleshi Bekele, Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy say Ethiopia has not signed an agreement that will compromise its interest and will never do that in the future

Ethiopia _ Ethiopian Dam
Ethiopian Ambassador to the United States Fitusm Arega (left), Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew (middle) and Water, Irrigation and Energy Minister, Seleshi Bekele (right) during a press conference at the Ethiopian Embassy in Washington . Photo Credit : Ethiopian Embassy in Washington

By Staff Writer
January 17, 2020

The terms of agreement between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan following a two days of negotiation in Washington DC between January 13 and January 15 2020, has triggered mounting criticism from Ethiopians from all walks of life. 

The U.S. government Department of Treasury and the World Bank attended it as “observers.” 

A day before the agreement, President Donald Trump, who expressed his admiration for Egyptian president and to whom he pledged support in the Ethiopian Dam talk, met with Foreign Ministers from the three Countries.    

For many, the agreement, which is not yet final, does compromise Ethiopia’s right to use its share of the Nile water more than 80 percent of which originates from Ethiopia. 

Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Gedu Andargachew, along with Seleshi Bekele, Ethiopia’s Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy, had a press conference at the Ethiopian Embassy in Washington DC just a day after the agreement between the three countries was announced. 

Apparently, the press conference was organized in response to outrage in social media about the contents of the agreement. Unlike in the past, Egyptian media outlets covered the story with caution – seemingly not to trigger resistance from Ethiopians.  VOA news, on its part, reported it as if there was a deadlock while it is clear from the joint statement of the negotiating parties that an agreement has been reached although it is to be spelled out further by a team of legal and other experts. 

Gedu Andargachew and Seleshi Bekele said during the press conference that Ethiopia not compromise its national interest in the points of consensus and will never do that in the future too. This stand, they said, will remain Ethiopia’s standing principle.

The negotiation is needed from the point of view of cooperating with lower riparian countries for Nile is an international river and will in no way compromise Ethiopia’s national interest, the two ministers said during the press conference. 

They have also said that filling the dam will start this year, and it may take anywhere between 4 and 7 years to complete filling of the dam, according to Gedu Andargachew and Seleshi Bekele. In the agreed upon consensus text, the dam will only fill in the months between July and August (exact dates of the duration unspecified). 

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  1. I’m sure these patriot countrymen will not compromise the national interests of the old country. Stubborn stance on a winner takes all behavior will never benefit anyone of the three stakeholders. There must be thresholds where all three of them can compromise on. They can battle on it but it would be utter foolish to go to war for it. We should remember that Egypt knows very well that if war breaks because of this dam it will lose it all. Then all options will be on the table on el-Sisi’s table. Such scenario will cause our old country to lose diplomatically on global basis. It may end up being isolated. And that won’t be funny. I don’t want even begin to imagine what the situation in the old country will look like. Bigots will be able to finish the job they have started. Swaths of the country will be carved out to be fiefdoms of these hate mongers and smart alecks. Shrubs and overgrowths will be cleared so fresh tools of destruction will arrive daily from Al-Qahirah. The demonic Wahhabis will now have open doors in the east, southeast and northeast. I just don’t want to think about such scenario. I wish we should step back and ponder about the issues from all angles. We should refrain from reacting with raw emotion. It is easy to down play what these patriot countrymen accomplished from our comfy homes here in the West. We don’t have bigots breathing their dragon breath on our shoulders every minute of the day. Those glorious people who produced us all want someone to help them or show them the ways in which they can bring the dough home in peace. They are sick and tired of conflicts triggered by internal miscreants and they don’t want a double down by external forces. That Amhara parent is crying his/her eyes out because her only son was bludgeoned to death in his college campus for only reason he is an Amhara. That Oromo parent has been wailing after losing his son in a college front yard just because being an Oromo has made him a mortal enemy. That parent from Tigray has been denied a day in court for his son who was hacked to death and insult to injury he is being told he is a ‘woyane’. That Somali spouse has been wailing from dawn to dusk for the husband/father who was savagely stoned/hacked to death because being a Somali had made him a deadly enemy that given day. The same goes to Gamo, Guji. Shangul and all others. They are all very tired of conflicts.

    I say kudos to these very capable patriots Obbo Gedu bin Andargachew and Obbo Dr. Seleshi bin Bekele for what they accomplished during the negotiations.

  2. The credibility of the Ethiopian government among the majority of the BOND purchasers is at stake , since the terms of the bond are not given the proper recognition .


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