KHARTOUM — Sudan has said that reaching a satisfactory deal regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) needs political will from leaders of Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia, according to a statement by Sudan’s Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources.
“Reaching a tripartite, satisfactory and binding agreement needs a political will from the leaders of the concerned countries,” Yasir Abbas, Sudan’s minister of irrigation and water resources, was quoted in the statement as saying. Ministers of foreign affairs and irrigation of Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia on Tuesday held a video meeting to discuss resumption of the Ethiopian Nile dam talks under the patronage of South Africa, the current chair of the African Union (AU), the statement said.
Sudan has reiterated adherence to negotiation as a sole means to reach a satisfactory deal over the GERD, according to the statement. It noted that Sudan has expressed reservation over continuation of the talks with the previous method which led to a deadlock during the past rounds. Sudan has proposed giving a bigger role to the experts and observers in the negotiation process to narrow the viewpoints, it added.
According to the statement, the three countries agreed to convene a follow-up meeting, to be called for by Sudan as soon as possible, to submit a report to the AU within one week on means of achieving tangible progress in the talks which have stalled since August. Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia have been negotiating under the AU over technical and legal issues related to the filling and operation of the GERD.