18:51 GMT08 August 2020
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    CAIRO (Sputnik) – Egypt has officially asked the UN Security Council to interfere in the course of the negotiations on the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) on the Blue Nile to prevent unilateral steps from Ethiopia, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said.

    "Egypt says that it has asked the UN Security Council to interfere in the situation around the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam to reaffirm the importance of the continuation of the good-will talks between Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan ... aimed at reaching a fair and balanced decision ... as well as preventing Ethiopia from unilateral steps," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement on late Friday.

    Cairo stresses that the request to the UN Security Council has been made following the stalled negotiations.

    Since 2011, Ethiopia has been building what may become Africa's largest hydroelectric power plant. Sudan and Egypt fear that when the GERD is launched, it will inevitably lead to water shortages downstream, something that Ethiopia has consistently denied.

    The three Nile basin states have held over a dozen rounds of talks since the start of the construction, but disagreements persist. As of now, the construction of the dam is reportedly completed by more than 71 percent and is planned to be fully terminated in 2023.

    The trilateral talks on the dam resumed last week in an online format after a three-month pause. On Saturday, a representative of the Egyptian Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation said that the Ethiopia-sponsored draft agreement denied water rights to downstream-located Sudan and Egypt and gave Ethiopia exclusive right to the Nile's water resources.

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    Ethiopia, dam, UNSC, UN, Egypt
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