US President Donald Trump has reassured Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi of his support with regard to the ongoing dispute over the Grand Renaissance Dam being built in Ethiopia
Washington has been hosting talks between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan – but Ethiopia skipped the latest round of negotiations last week and has accused the US of overstepping its role as a neutral observer.
Reports say President Trump held a phone conversation with President Sisi on Tuesday about the $4bn (£3.1bn) mega-dam project, which will be Africa’s biggest hydroelectric power plant upon completion.
President Trump is quoted as saying he was hopeful that an agreement “would be finalized soon and benefit all parties involved”.
The US says the dam should not be completed without agreement between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt, which relies on the river Nile for 90% of its water.
Last week the US Treasury Department said it had negotiated an agreement, but Ethiopia has not signed it and has skipped the latest round of negotiations.
Egypt wants the filling of the dam to take place over a longer period so the river level does not suddenly drop dramatically. Ethiopia says it wants to start filling the dam in June.