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  • Sudan’s FM says differences on Ethiopia’s Renaissance dam settled – Sudan Tribune

    August 27, 2016 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Ibrahim Ghandour has said differences that existed among Sudan, Ethiopia and Egypt on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) have completely been settled. Read more at

    Photograph: Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukri (L), Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour (C) and Ethiopian Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom (R) pose after reaching an agreement on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam in the Sudanese capital Khartoum on 29 December 2015 (Ebrahim Hamid/AFP/Getty)

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  • What's the real size of Africa?

    countries that fit into Africa

    On a typical world map, Canada is a vast nation.

    But, in reality, three Canadas would comfortably fit inside Africa.

    Our world map is wildly misleading.

    It's all down to the European cartographer Geert de Kremer, better known as Mercator, and his 16th century map projection.

    While a convenient way to chart the world, the map distorts the true size of countries.

    A map made by Europe for Europe

    On the Mercator map, Africa -- sitting on the equator, reasonably undistorted -- is left looking much smaller than it really is.

    But Canada, Russia, the United States and Europe are greatly enlarged.

    The distortion is largest near the poles: Greenland, which looks about the same size as the whole of Africa on the Mercator, is a classic example. In truth, it is no bigger than the Democratic Republic of Congo.

    That European and North American countries are enlarged is no accident. This system provided more space for Western cartographers to mark towns, cities, roads etc in their part of the world, Kraak says.

    "If you would take a map projection with equal areas then there is almost no space on the map to display all [these details]."

    There was, of course, much to map in Africa, too, but that mattered less to the cartographers up north, he adds.

    Read more at CNN

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  • Ethiopians killed with 'sticks and shovels'

    South Sudanese refugees in Ethiopia have been charged in court with murdering 10 Ethiopians with sticks and shovels, Reuters news agency reports.

    The 23 are alleged to have carried out the killings at a refugee camp in Ethiopia's western Gambella province in April in retaliation for a car accident in which two refugee children died, it reports.

    They have not yet pleaded.

    Reuters quotes the charge sheet as saying that the "gruesome" murders were planned in advance and two women were among the dead.

    The charge sheet added: The 10 victims were all innocent Ethiopian civilians who were only employed as construction workers at the site.

    More than 270,000 South Sudanese are taking refuge in Gambella, having fled violence which has hit their home country since it became independent in 2011.

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  • Ethiopia's relationship with Egypt, Sudan not confined to Nile water: ambassador

    Ethiopia's relationship with Egypt and Sudan is not confined to just to issues relating to Nile water rights, Ethiopian Ambassador to Egypt said in an Egyptian TV interview Monday.

    In an interview with the private TV station Al-Nahar, Ambassador Mahmoud Dreier said that the relationship between the three countries was "bigger than that," and that the relationships, some of the oldest in Africa, could be a set model for relationships throughout the continent.

    The Grand Renaissance Dam (GRD), giant hydroelectric dam project undertaken by Ethiopia, has been the source of contention between Cairo and Addis Ababa. Egypt, which relies almost exclusively on the Nile for farming and drinking water, fears the dam would significantly diminish its share of the river's water.

    The interview with the Ethiopian ambassador came only hours after Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and Ethiopian PM Hailemariam Desalegn agreed during the sidelines of the African Union summit in Rwanda's Kijali to begin technical studies on the dam's hydrological and environmental impact on downstream countries in order to "reach agreement on the rules of filing and operating."

    "The truth is we have interests, Egypt has interests, and Sudan has interests. We are reviewing how to create a harmony in mutual interests," Dreier said.

    The ambassador said the construction of the GRD was in a "very developed" stage, noting that the construction of the $4 billion dam is slated for completion in 2017.

    "What was left in construction is very little. It's nearly done," he added.

    He denounced alleged attempts by the Egyptian media to report untruthful news about the dam, adding that such outlets portrayed the dam as a "devil".

    The ambassador said that this was due to the such outlets' "ignorance" of Ethiopia and its historical 90-year diplomatic relationship with Egypt.

    He added that the current series of discussions being held were not about whether the dam will be built or not, adding that the studies underway -- which will take 11 to 12 months to complete -- are related to the effects of the dam.

    Dreier said that talks between the technical committees of involved countries were being held in a manner that portrays a good relationship between the concerned officials.

    The ambassador then stressed that the dam was "Ethiopian, built by Ethiopians, and would be administered by Ethiopians," when asked by the presenter on whether a "foreign side" was going to be involved in the management of the dam.

    Dreier also discussed Ethiopia's relationship with Israel following Israeli PM Benjamen Netanyahu controversial visit to Addis Ababa earlier this month, saying that the relationship was not a "secretive" one.

    Israel launched a $13-million aid package to strengthen economic ties and cooperation with African countries, including Ethiopia, with a pledge to also provide certain African states with training in "domestic security".

    Dreier, however, stressed that Ethiopia doesn't insinuate Israel with its relationship with Egypt.

    According to the Ethiopian envoy, a sixth summit on a "presidential level" between Egypt and Ethiopia would be held in the coming months. He added that the summit will be hosted by Egypt, yet declined to mention when the summit was to take place.

    Although Egypt has repeatedly expressed concern over the dam's possible effect on the country, Ethiopia insists it will not negatively affect Egypt's share of Nile water.

    In December 2015, President El-Sisi addressed the public saying that there is no reason to worry about the dam and that the matter would be resolved.

    "I totally understand the concern of Egyptians as water is a matter of life or death," El-Sisi added.

    Source: Ahramonline

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  • Europe urged to learn lessons from Ethiopia on refugee treatment

    Ireland’s former president and Untied Nations Special Envoys on El Niño and Climate Mary Robinson said European leaders should look into Ethiopia when it comes to ways of handling refugees.

    Mrs. Robinson made the remarks after concluding her three-day tour this week in Ethiopia.

    Ethiopia is one of the least developed nationst,  however Ethiopia hosts more refugees than any other African countries.

    Currently Ethiopia shelters over 700,000 refuges in different camps.

    "It is really depressing that at the moment that there is so much attention on refugees and migrants nearly losing their lives then not being treated well when they get to Europe" Robinson told journalists.

    "Yet in Ethiopia they are made welcome and they are cared for, the way it should be. Europe can learn from what is happening here in Ethiopia"

    While in Ethiopia this week, Robinson held talks with government officials and international Aid agency representatives.

    Read more at Sudan Tribune


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