Ethiopia diverts flow of Blue Nile

2013-05-28 21:16
Great renaissance dam. (Photo supplied)

Great renaissance dam. (Photo supplied)

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Addis Ababa - Ethiopia is starting to divert the flow of the Blue Nile to construct a giant dam that is raising fears in Nile-dependent and water-starved Egypt.

The official Ethiopian Radio and Television Agency quoted Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnin as telling officials at a Tuesday ceremony diverting flow at the dam construction site that the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam will provide hydro-electricity not only for Ethiopia but also for neighbouring countries.

Downstream nations Egypt and Sudan have objected to the construction saying it violates a colonial-era agreement which gives Egypt nearly 70% of Nile River waters.

Ethiopia says the dam will not affect Egypt and that the 1959 agreement ignores the needs of five upriver countries. Some 84% of the water from the world's longest river originates in Ethiopia.

Read more on:    ethiopia  |  east africa  |  water

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