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Ethiopia completes third filling of large Renaissance dam despite Egyptian protests

News 360 logo News 360 8/12/2022 Daniel Stewart
Archive - Grand Renaissance Dam in Ethiopia - Gioia Forster/dpa © Provided by News 360 Archive - Grand Renaissance Dam in Ethiopia - Gioia Forster/dpa

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced Friday the completion of the third fill of the Grand Renaissance Dam, one of the most ambitious infrastructure projects in the history of the African country, whose construction has pitted the Ethiopian government against Egypt and Sudan, which accuse it of stealing resources from the people of the Blue Nile and of having undertaken the monumental work without listening to reason.

The filling takes place one day after the official inauguration of the second turbine of the dam, whose construction is already 95 percent complete and whose performance has already reached 83.3 percent.

Given the dam's current height and water level, the two turbines generate 540 megawatts of power, inching closer to the combined 750 megawatts expected from the two turbines at full power, reports Ethiopian state news channel FANA.

Ultimately, the dam's final 13 turbines are expected to produce more than 5,000 megawatts, more than double Ethiopia's current output.

Meanwhile, African Union-sponsored talks to find a solution to the dispute between the three countries have been stalled since April last year.

In July, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry sent a letter to the UN Security Council to register Egypt's categorical rejection "of Ethiopia continuing to fill the Nile mega dam unilaterally without an agreement with Egypt and Sudan on the filling and operation of the dam."

The minister called on the Security Council to assume its responsibilities in this regard, including intervening to ensure the implementation of the presidential statement issued by the council, which obliges the three countries to negotiate an agreement on the dam as soon as possible, the Daily News Egypt portal reported at the time.

Egypt, the note warns, "reserves its legitimate right guaranteed in the UN Charter to take all necessary measures to ensure and protect its national security, including against any risk that may be caused in the future by these unilateral Ethiopian measures."

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