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Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Cairo could be preparing more extreme backup options to pressure Ethiopia over GERD

2018 is likely to bring to a head tensions between Egypt and Ethiopia over water that have been building for almost a decade, Michele Dunne and Katherine Pollock write for The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. There are concerns about what the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) could mean for Egypt’s water supply. Domestically, Dunne and Pollock say that “so far it seems that development projects to improve water usage—the rational solution to this problem—are neither of a proper size nor sharply focused enough to [cope] with the possible loss of as much as one-quarter of the country’s renewable fresh water.” On an international scale, they suggest that “while Cairo has until now relied heavily on diplomacy, it might be preparing more extreme backup options to put pressure on Ethiopia and attract international attention should its efforts fail.”

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