China and the UN have backed calls for Ethiopia to resume talks over its plans to begin filling a giant hydropower dam. Egypt is opposed to the plans. Ethiopia wants to start supplying the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam when the next rainy season begins in July. Egypt insists on having a say in how quickly it is filled, because it will affect the flow of the Nile River, the nation’s main source of fresh water. The US and the EU have both urged the countries to resolve the issue peacefully. The US and World Bank-backed efforts to mediate the dispute between Ethiopia and Egypt broke down in February when Ethiopia withdrew from the talks. Earlier in May, Egypt accused Ethiopia of having “a policy of unilateralism”, according to a letter to the Security Council obtained by Bloomberg. In its response, Ethiopia has said it doesn’t have any legal obligations to seek Egypt’s approval to fill the dam.
SOURCE: BUSINESS DAY LIVE