Sudan, Ethiopia agree to joint military force to protect dam


Sudan and Ethiopia have agreed to setup joint forces which will protect Addis Ababa’s Grand Renaissance Dam.

The Chiefs of Staff of both countries, Kamal Abdul-Marouf Al-Mahi and Samora Yunus, met last week to discuss the defence protocol signed between the two countries and a number of issues of common concern.

The Ethiopian-Sudanese Joint Military Commission concluded its work in the Ethiopian capital last Friday.

The two sides stressed “the need to abide by the results achieved and the readiness for full solidarity in securing the border, the exchange of information and control of rampant groups, combating smuggling, human trafficking, arms trade, drugs and transient crimes.”

They agreed to “activate forces … to maintain security and stability, as well as cooperation in the fields of joint training and exchange of experiences.”

The Grand Renaissance Dam has been built about 20 kilometres away from Sudan’s border. Its construction has led to a bitter diplomatic spat between the countries and their north African neighbour Egypt.

Cairo fears a possible negative impact of the Renaissance Dam on its annual share of Nile water, Egypt’s main water source; while Addis Ababa says that the dam will be highly profitable, especially when exploited in the production of electricity, and will not affect the downstream countries, Sudan and Egypt.

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