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UAE offers to mediate Nile dam dispute in name of Red Sea security

Can the United Arab Emirates succeed where others have failed in bringing Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt to terms over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam?
A general view of the the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), near Guba in Ethiopia, on Dec. 26, 2019.

On April 24, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo. During their meeting, both leaders discussed the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam dispute, which has pitted Egypt and Sudan against Ethiopia.

Mohammed bin Zayed’s discussions with Sisi on the dam issue reflect the UAE’s growing interest in ameliorating this dispute. On March 26, the UAE formally offered to mediate the dam dispute and on March 31, the UAE invited the foreign ministers of Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt for talks on the dam in Abu Dhabi. The UAE wishes to facilitate a deal that would allow Ethiopia to fill the dam and simultaneously ensure that the downstream countries, Egypt and Sudan, maintain sufficient access to Nile River water.

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