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Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Gulf countries take credit for bringing Egypt and Ethiopia closer together?

Gulf countries take credit for bringing Egypt and Ethiopia closer together? Officials from the UAE, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia reportedly put a lot of effort over the last several months in pushing Ethiopia to resolve its outstanding dispute with Egypt over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), an unnamed diplomat tells Al Shorouk, claiming the Gulf countries even pledged more investments to Addis Ababa. Pressure from the GCC may even see Ethiopia agree to push its schedule for filling the dam’s reservoir to have it stretch over a period of 7-10 years instead of the current plan of three years. Egypt has been worried that the fast pace at which Ethiopia plans to fill its reservoir would impact its Nile water supply. The statements come one day after President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed reached a breakthrough in the years-long talks on the GERD, agreeing to adopt a joint vision on the dam that respects the other’s goals and interests.

Egypt takes further steps in turning a new leaf with Ethiopia: Egypt also released 32 Ethiopian prisoners on Sunday during Ahmed’s three-day visit to Cairo, the Associated Press reports. The freed prisoners will arrive in Addis Ababa later on Monday, according to a tweet by Ahmed’s Chief of Staff Fitsum Arega. Egypt had also promised to help locate the bodies of 38 Ethiopians killed by Daesh in Libya in 2015, Arega adds.

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