Addis Ababa — Ethiopia expressed its conviction that the AU-led dialogue over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) will commence soon under the leadership of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
In his biweekly press briefing today, Foreign Affairs Spokesperson, Dina Mufti said Ethiopia remains confident that the AU-led negotiation over the dam is an ongoing process that will provide win-win solutions to the negotiating parties.
“We hope the trilateral meeting will resume soon. We believe the three countries will agree on the next process regarding issues such as filling and operation of the dam,” according Dina.
Egypt and Sudan are now demanding the involvement of other parties in the ongoing GERD mediation process.
However, according to the Spokesperson, the AU-led negotiation should be finalized before any other option is pursued to solve the outstanding issues.
Noting that the AU-led negotiation is still on going, he underscored the need to pursue with the process as long as it has not yet been finalized. “We do not see any reason why we go for other option as the AU-led mediation is currently active,” Dina added.
In case any other option is deemed necessary, the issue shall be treated by pertinent provisions of the Tripartite Declaration of Principles on GERD, it was indicated.
According to him, the current Chair of the AU, the Democratic Republic of Congo, have been discussing separately with the three countries on the continuation of the mediation.
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As to Sudanese concerns on the dam’s safety and data exchange, he said “we are ready to exchange data with regarding the safety of the dam.”
However, he added that issues of safety cannot be a pretext to halt the continuation of the trilateral discussions.
Regarding the current border dispute with Sudan, he said that the government of Ethiopia has still been reiterating the need to solve the dispute through negotiation and dialogue.
As to the current situation in Tigray, the Spokesperson stated that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Demeke Mekonnen held constructive discussion with the U.S. Delegation led by Senator Chris Coons on the humanitarian situation in Tigray and other key issues.
During the occasions, the delegation briefed on genesis of law enforcement operation, reconstruction and rehabilitation of process, humanitarian assistance underway in the region, he indicated.
Speaking on humanitarian assistance in Tigray, the Ethiopian government, despite the unfettered access granted to humanitarians, is still covering 70 percent of the total delivery of aid in the region.
The government reiterated its call to the international community to scale up humanitarian support in the Tigray region, it was stated.
Repatriating Ethiopian migrants, about 1,426 Ethiopians have been repatriated from Saudi Arabia and Yemen over the week. Among these, 143 are from Yemen, Dina added.
Furthermore, various political diplomacy, economic diplomacy, citizen-centered diplomatic activities have carried in over the week, it was learned.