Ethiopian army announces it can protect Renaissance Dam against foreign threat
Samora Yunis, Ethiopian National Defense Forces Chief of Staff - Photo Courtesy of abbaymedia

CAIRO: Ethiopian National Defense Forces Chief of Staff Samora Yunis said they are able to defend and protect the Renaissance Dam from any foreign threat, according to Anadul news agency on Saturday.

The Renaissance Dam sparked tension between Egypt and Ethiopia and is scheduled to start operating by late 2015, according to deputy chair of the National Coordinating Council for the dam project Zadig Abraha in previous press statements in March. He said the dam is supposed to produce 750 megawatts daily.

But the dam would have drawbacks on Egypt since according to experts the dam is expected to reduce Egypt’s annual share of the Nile water by 12 billion cubic meters. Both countries convened many meetings to ease tension between them both but they did reach a final solution.

Ethiopia began the construction of the Renaissance Dam on the Nile two months after former President Hosni Mubarak stepped down in 2011.

Presidential candidates Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and Hamdeen Sabbhi expressed their views regarding how they will deal with the Renaissance Dam problem if they become president through TV interviews. Sisi said he would research the matter well since water is a matter of “life or death” for Egyptians while Nasserist’s candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi said he would tackle the matter politically without clarifying how.

Ethiopian authorities announced arresting three Egyptians last week, accusing them of gathering intelligence on the dam system, according to Anadul news agency. Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy said in a press statement on May 10 that the Egyptian authorities are following the details of the arrest.

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