Start of Political Talks on Renaissance Dam

By: Aisha Braima

KHARTOUM (SUDANOW) – The foreign ministers of Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia have affirmed their resolve to reach an agreement on the controversial Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and to bolster cooperation amongst the three countries.
Addressing the opening session of the tripartite meeting that also brought the foreign and water ministers from the three countries at Salam Rotana Hotel, Sudan Foreign Minister Prof. Ibrahim Ghandour emphasized the need to achieve progress in the talks. He said the issue is related to the national security for each of the three countries.
Ghandour said on Sunday the heads of state and peoples of these countries looking forward for this meeting to come out with specifics.
The last meeting witnessed positive discussions on the standing issues. The joint committee will present a report to the meeting on the progress in the tasks assigned to it , he said.
The Egyptian Foreign Minister Samih Shukri said the renaissance Dam would establish a base for strategic relations between the three countries adding that his country considers Ethiopia as a sister country not because of the shared Nile water but because of the long joint history in bilateral relations.
Shukri said the viewpoint of his delegation would be based on the previously taken steps, saying the framework agreement is a solid ground for current talks. He said his team is expressing good will and dedication to work towards promoting fraternal spirits that would help in fulfilling the mutual aspirations in all fields.
The Ethiopian minister, Tedros Adhanom, said his country, Sudan and Egypt are linked by a joint destiny based on strong historical relations. He affirmed his country's readiness to display utmost transparency and cooperation on the dam file in order to fulfill aspirations of the three countries.
Meanwhile, President Omar Bashir met separately here on Sunday afternoon with the Egyptian and Ethiopian foreign and Water Resources ministers who are taking part in a sixpartite round of talks on the Ethiopian Grand Renaissance Dam.
Foreign Minister Ghandour told SUNA that the meetings came in the context of keenness by the Sudan for implementation of an agreement previously reached by the leaders of the three countries.
He said President Bashir directed all participants in the negotiations to accelerate finishing implementation agreement on the Dam in light of the agreement and memorandum of understanding that he and the Ethiopian and Egyptian leaders concluded in Khartoum last March.
Dr. Ghandour said the ministers expressed their commitment with instructions of the heads of state for implementation of the agreement and indicated that they have chosen Khartoum as a venue for their meetings because the Sudan is playing a focal role on the issue.


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