Egypt Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry headed on Tuesday to Bujumburathe, the capital of Burundi, at the beginning of hisAfrican tour that includes South Africa, Tanzania, Rwanda, Congo, South Sudan, and Niger, according to a Monday statement.
He will deliver messages from President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to the leaders of these African countries, the statement said.
On Sunday, the ministry said an Egyptian delegation including Yasser Othman, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Arab Affairs, and Yasser Sorour, Deputy Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Nile Water Affairs headed to Algeria, Tunisia, and Mauritania to deliver messages from Al-Sisi to the leaders of the three countries.
The messages reviewed the talks of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) and asserted the Egyptian stance regarding this issue, the ministry said.
The Egyptian delegation held meetings with the three countries’ ambassadors and discussed ways of promoting cooperation and issues of common interest.
Egypt is intensifying its diplomatic and international efforts to tackle the issue of the GERD, after the Ethiopian government pulled out from talks that were held on 27-28 February in Washington and rejected the US-brokerage.
Al-Sisi received on Sunday the Deputy Head of Sudan’s Sovereign Council Mohamad Hamdan Dagalo (Hamidati), in the presence of Egypt’s General Intelligence Service Chief Abbas Kamel.
They discussed regional issues of common interest and, in particular, the recent developments of the GERD in light of the US-brokered agreement over the filling and operating of the dam, which Egypt initiated last month.
Earlier in February, Ethiopia announced that it will commence the initial filling of the GERD in parallel with the construction of the dam, “in accordance with the 2015 Agreement on Declaration of Principles without causing any significant harm.”
Egypt refused Ethiopia’s intentions to move on in commencing the first filling of the GERD before reaching a final and fair agreement with Egypt and Sudan in this regard.
Egypt signed the US-brokered agreement of filling and operating of GERD, while Ethiopia and Sudan did not.