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The River Nile: Bridge or barrier? Who should answer this perennial question?

22 Oct

By Dosa El-Bey, Al-Ahram

The 25 January Revolution in Egypt put the issue of the water of the River Nile back at the top of the foreign-policy agenda. Diplomatic efforts at creating common interests and boosting economic cooperation seem to be the best way of managing conflicts arising from differences over the distribution of the river’s water, and the various countries involved have shown a willingness to build bridges in an effort to capitalise on mutual interests and bring about a win-win situation for all.
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Political changes roil balance of power & proliferation of competing demands over Nile

4 Sep

By Carolyine Lamere, Source: NewSecurityBeat

In 1979, Egyptian President Anwar Sadat famously said that “the only matter that could take Egypt to war again is water.” Sadat’s message was clear: the Nile is a matter of national security for Egypt.
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Nile Focus: Egypt’s new downstream diplomacy

3 Apr

By Sarah Grebowski*, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs

A curious thing has happened on the Nile since the fall of Hosni Mubarak: after decades of dictating the river’s politics, Egypt is finally acting like a downstream state. Sensing both its vulnerability and opportunity for change in the wake of the January 25 revolution, Egypt’s transitional authorities have shuttled representatives from one Nile Basin state to another, making gestures in the name of cooperation and mutual development.
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Is Ethiopia’s rendezvous with history really arriving, or are we in some fantasy?

24 May

“I don’t believe you should put the future on hold in order to bring the past to account.” 

 Mohammed Heikal’s advice to Egyptian revolutionaries, Al Ahram, 19 May 2011

By Keffyalew Gebremedhin

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Ethiopia & Egypt: Fresh optimism for new beginning

The question of utilization of the Nile River is not simply a matter of national sovereignty or spiritual issue for Ethiopia, as Abbay has always been viewed by tradition. Nor is it mere symbol for demonstration of patriotism that would barely go beyond emotions and sentiments. This time with Ethiopia’s determination to utilize it effectively, the Nile must become the potent mechanism Ethiopia has needed to lift millions of its citizens out of abject poverty and jettison the country into the 21st century. Ethiopia’s determinations now in taking bold initiatives and the onset of changed attitudes in Egypt since its revolution have coincided to create positive environment for that.

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Aida, Verdi’s opera, stands out as reminder of the on-going Nile dilemma

12 Jan

By Keffyalew Gebremedhin | First published on Jan 12, 2011

At a time of terrible slump in the global economy, when millions of workers and families across countries have been visited by its adverse consequences, the watchmaker Rolex fêted the international public with six famous opera performances, via CNBC, transmitted at intervals from 24 Dec on. A good gesture as it was, the treat became part of the Christmas celebrations and best wishes for the New Year.
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