Ethiopia Gives Revolutionary Egypt A Break Over Nile River

nile river, ethiopia dam, egyptEthiopia has agreed to hold off on an agreement that could dispossess Egypt of its historical monopoly of the Nile River.

In order to give Egypt time to elect a new parliament following the revolution that toppled President Mubarak, Ethiopian Prime Minister Melis Zenawi has agreed to postpone the Nile Basin Agreement. The agreement will dramatically change Egypt’s Nile river water rights, divesting the country of its longstanding monopoly.

The two countries have been locked in a struggle after Ethiopia began construction on the massive Millennium Dam Project earlier this year. An expensive endeavor that one of the world’s poorest nations can scarcely afford, if completed the new Nile dam could provide Ethiopians with 5,250MW of energy.

Egypt send a 47 member delegation to Ethiopia to smooth out the Nile River conflict. Included in that throng were three presidential hopefuls, students who helped to topple former President Hosni Mubarak, as well as several prominent Egyptian opposition leaders.

Hamdian Sabhy, Hisham Basetawsi, and Bosayna Kamel are among the presidential hopefuls that attempted to sway Ethiopia’s stance on the Nile waters. Despite rejecting pleas to provide studies depicting how the new dam will impact downstream countries, Ethiopia has lightened its former grip and will delay signing the Nile Basin agreement.

According to Ethiopia forums, Zenawi also agreed to forming a committee of Ethiopian, Egyptian, and Sudanese experts to look into the Millennium Dam project.

Zenawi’s new position comes in deference to the historic revolution that is expected to usher in a new generation of Egyptian leadership.

:: Ethiopia Forums

More on Ethiopia, Egypt, and the new Nile Dam:

Defiant Ethiopia to Proceed with Massive Nile Dam

Egypt Holds on Tight to Nile Water Rights

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4 thoughts on “Ethiopia Gives Revolutionary Egypt A Break Over Nile River”

  1. Samuel Sissay says:

    Ethiopia is able to build the dam,who would have thought that so much money would be raised in september’2010.It would even be best for the Sudanese and Egyptians to cover some of the expenses in view of the consequences.

  2. Okello says:

    If all parties approach the issue with good intentions, the nile waters is enough. Egypt probably needs more share given its dependence on the river. The others need it desperately, too. Share the river based on these facts. The other point that needs to be pointed out is that Egypt has the tech and financial means to develop other sources of water.

  3. Thanks for your comment Amman! I agree that this can be worked out sensibly to everyone’s benefit if the right amount of care is taken.

  4. Amman says:

    It is obvious that both Sudan and Egypt have serious positions to Nile water rights and so does Ethiopia. The Nile river is no longer a political issue but a Hydrology, Engineering and a WIN_WIN issue. If these 3 countries leaders act with fear of God, then the benefit of the DAM to all 3 countries is guaranteed and more WIN_WIN projects can be achieved in the future.

    Good luck to the long-lived peoples.

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