Tuesday 06 April 2021
The Renaissance Dam negotiations are facing a new stumbling block, following the announcement of the failure of the last two negotiations sessions in the Congolese capital, “Kinshasa”, over the course of April 4 and 5, in light of an Egyptian / Sudanese agreement on the quartet mediation proposal, which Addis Ababa rejects.
Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry described the negotiations as a “last chance” before Ethiopia begins the second filling of the Renaissance Dam next July, amid fears that negotiations will fail before the date of the second filling of the dam.
This comes in light of a state of anticipation for the position and options of Egypt and Sudan in the event that negotiations fail, amid a state of Ethiopian intransigence, and a clear desire not to reach an agreement that binds it to the demands of the two downstream countries.
Dr. Musaed Abdel Aty, a professor of international law, said that if this round of negotiations did not come to any result, it is possible to rely on Article 36 of the Charter of the UN Security Council, which allows it at any stage of the conflict between states to intervene and issue decisions that are binding on all parties, pointing out. That the international community sees unjustified Ethiopian intransigence in the Renaissance Dam crisis.
The professor of international law continued, in exclusive statements to “Masrawy”, that according to Article 38 of the Council’s charter, the latter could impose international mediation, or issue an arbitration decision to avoid any conflict or war that might break out between the conflicting countries.
He pointed to the need for coordination between Egypt and Sudan to address the international community, and to seek the help of the law of transboundary international rivers.
On the other hand, Dr. Khaled Abu Zeid, Regional Director of Water Resources at CEDARI and the Arab Water Council, emphasized that negotiations are a last chance, as Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry declared Because Ethiopia in this case would have broken the Declaration of Principles signed in 2015, destroying the idea of Addis Ababas commitment to its pledges, indicating that the matter would be the second breach of the agreed declaration, when it suddenly reserved 5 billion cubic meters last year.
Abu Zeid added in a special statement to “Masrawy” that there is the possibility of issuing a decision by the African Security Council and submitting a request to the United Nations to stop the work of the dam until the completion of the negotiations, explaining that the position of Egypt and Sudan is getting bigger, but a draft resolution must be issued by the Security Council stating the seriousness of the dam work. And that any actions undertaken by Sudan and Egypt will be a protection of their national interests, not an act of hostility towards a sovereign state.
He also pointed to the importance of the report issued by the Congo state in its capacity as a sponsor of the negotiations and a neutral African party, stressing that the Egyptian diplomacy had exerted many pressures on Addis Ababa to return to negotiations again, and began preparing for other moves.
On Monday, the Renaissance Dam negotiations continued in the Congolese capital, Kinshasa, as the second closed meeting between the foreign ministers of the three countries regarding the Renaissance Dam began, before media outlets announced the failure to reach an agreement between the negotiating parties.
Dr. Abbas Sharaqi, a professor of water resources at Cairo University, said that Egypt’s options, far from using the military machine, are represented in the Security Council, and the issuance of binding decisions to restart negotiations under an international umbrella that has the tools to pressure all parties.
Sharaki added to “Masrawy”, that despite the reassuring statements, it is possible that the negotiations will continue for another day, which was shown in the statements of the President of the Congo, pointing out that this opportunity is the last for the African Union.
The professor of water resources indicated that the President of the Congo will hold contacts with the heads of the negotiating countries to facilitate the dialogue, adding: “The international desire to reach an agreement has become high, which was evident in the statements of the US ambassador to the Congo.”