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Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Nile dam raises tensions between Egypt, Ethiopia

Tensions between Egypt and Ethiopia are rising after Ethiopia began diverting the water of a Nile River tributary to build the continent's biggest hydroelectric power plant. Despite criticism from Egypt, Ethiopia says construction of the dam will proceed.

Ethiopia summoned the Egyptian ambassador to demand an explanation after Egyptian politicians were overheard on a live broadcast discussing ways to sabotage the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, after Ethiopia started diverting a part of the Blue Nile for the construction of the US4.7-billion dollar dam.

Scheduled for completion in 2017, the dam will transform Ethiopia into Africa's biggest power producer. While the construction started almost two years ago, it was not until the diversion that tension between Egypt and Ethiopia broke into public view. The government in Cairo said it has not approved the building of the dam, and vowed to prevent the dam from reducing Egypt's water supply.


Scheduled for completion in 2017, the dam will transform Ethiopia into Africa's biggest power producer. While the construction started almost two years ago, it was not until the diversion that tension between Egypt and Ethiopia broke into public view. The government in Cairo said it has not approved the building of the dam, and vowed to prevent the dam from reducing Egypt's water supply.