Home Sci-TechEnvironment Sudan: GERD – ‘Sudan Must Safeguard 20 Million People Downstream’

Sudan: GERD – ‘Sudan Must Safeguard 20 Million People Downstream’

Sudan: GERD - 'Sudan Must Safeguard 20 Million People Downstream'

Khartoum — Sudan’s transitional government has made its position clear with regard to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, as negotiations on the issue between Sudan, Egypt, and Ethiopia remain at a deadlock. The Khartoum government’s position, which has been circulated widely on social media, says that “while Ethiopia negotiates for its right for socio-economic development, and Egypt for the right of its water share, Sudan negotiates to safeguard the lives of more than 20 million people living downstream the GERD”.

This clear statement of policy echoes remarks by the Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources, Yasir Abbas, in a press conference at SUNA on April7 following his participation at the fruitless negotiations in Kinshasa on the issue of Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). He warned that the filling of Renaissance Dam without agreement will directly threaten Sudan and endanger the lives of 20 million citizens living below the dam, adding that “this statement is not a matter of propaganda and media exaggeration, but rather a description of the facts”.

The statement highlights that “the filling for the first year has already been completed in July 2020, (unilaterally), without agreement, raising even more concerns in the region.

The Republic of the Sudan is an important riparian country to the Blue Nile, located immediately downstream of the GERD, and thus stands to be impacted the most by this large dam. Accordingly, Sudan feels obligated to inform the world community of its position, and views on GERD and on the ongoing negotiations.

“The Blue Nile is a sacred river our region is blessed with and shared by the three countries of Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan. It is an inseparable part of the history, culture, economy, and conscious of the people of our region. For Sudan, the Blue Nile is the lifeline for most of Sudan’s 40 million people. It serves 70 per cent of the irrigated land in the country, and as such represents the heart of the agricultural activities on which the country’s population and economy are largely dependent.”