Experts back Ethiopia’s decision to skip ‘derailed’ GERD talk

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ADDIS ABABA – Experts have welcomed Ethiopia’s decision to boycott the next round of GERD talks saying the country needs to take a break and consult with pertinent bodies as the talks came increasingly under pressure of third parties.

The Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity announced on Tuesday that the country will not take part in the upcoming trilateral talks with Egypt and Sudan to be held on Feb. 27-28, 2020 in
Washington D.C

Recent talks have been observed by the World Bank and the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury whose observational status turned into mediators, the experts argue.

Speaking to The Ethiopian Herald Fekahmed Negash, Executive Director of the Eastern Nile Technical Regional Office (ENTRO) said that the country’s decision is right and timely citing concerns on pressures from the World Bank and the US secretary of the treasury. From a genuine perspective, it was perhaps right decision by Ethiopia to accept the US’s invitation and participate in the U.S. brokered GERD talks.

It is also diplomatically right for the country to participate in the talks as it has strong ties with Washington. However, there are unresolved issues in the final document which the U.S. Secretary of Treasury might have prepared, he added.

“We have heard that the mediators were even putting pressure on Ethiopian negotiators, this was against the country’s interest. Hence, its decision to withdraw from the next round is valid. Ethiopia had to even stop its participation when the observers’ roles turn into a mediator.”

Preparing a comprehensive final agreement is at an early stage and it needs exhaustive

The Ethiopian Herald February 28/2020

 BY DESTA GEBREHIWOT