Magazine article New Internationalist

Calmer Waters: Nile Basin Countries Co-Operate in Water-Sharing Treaty

Magazine article New Internationalist

Calmer Waters: Nile Basin Countries Co-Operate in Water-Sharing Treaty

Article excerpt

THE threat that the wars of the 21st century will be fought over water may be receding, at least in East Africa.

The abundant waters of the longest river in the world, the Nile, could be about to be shared more equitably among the 10 African countries within its Basin: Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.

[Graph Not Transcribed]

A March conference in Kenya under the auspices of the Nile Basin Initiative, an organization that promotes sustainable use of the Nile for development, is to be followed by an accord in the Ugandan capital of Kampala in May.

'We are living in a world where transboundary waters have to be shared,' said Kenya's Water Resources Minister, Martha Karua. Her Tanzanian counterpart, Edward Lowassa, agreed: 'We do not recognize what happened in the past. We want equitable and reasonable use of the Nile waters for mutual benefits in all the riparian states.'

Previous accords were weighted in favour of Sudan and Egypt and the latter's economy depends extensively on water from the Nile. …

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