Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi affirmed Egypt’s stance on the imperative need to formulate a binding agreement with Sudan and Ethiopia on the Renaissance Dam, the Egyptian presidency said in a statement.
El-Sisi’s remarks came as he made a phone call with South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa on Saturday.
The presidents exchanged viewpoints on the updates of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue, within the framework of trilateral talks under the auspices of the African Union (AU) currently chaired by South Africa.
El-Sisi affirmed the importance of a binding agreement that would secure Egypt’s water rights during the filling and the operation of the dam, as the Nile water is an existential matter for Egyptian people.
Ramaphosa has expressed appreciation for the Egyptian efforts made to reach a solution to the GERD issue. He affirmed continuous coordination between Egypt and South Africa during the coming period to seek a fair and balanced agreement.
The two leaders also discussed issues of cooperation between the two countries. They both affirmed aspiration to enhance the brotherly relations on bilateral, continental and international levels.
South Africa has been mediating negotiations between Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia to resolve the years-long dispute over the massive dam.
Egypt and Sudan have insisted that the three countries sign a binding legal agreement on disputed issues surrounding GERD to safeguard the interests of the three parties, a demand repeatedly dodged by Addis Ababa over the last several years.