Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) Ethiopia and Egypt, the two biggest populous countries in Africa, are involved in their first war of words through international media after Ethiopia accused Egypt of supporting its rebel group, APA noted here on Friday.
The war of words started after Ethiopian PM Meles Zenawi gave on Wednesday an interview to Reuters in which he accused Egypt of supporting rebel groups.
However, it was not yet clear which rebel groups is being supported by Egypt.
The Ethiopian government vows to disclose details of the evidence which shows that Egypt is supporting Ethiopian rebel group.
President Mubarak of Egypt told AlJazeera TV satellite channel during his visit to Doha on Wednesday that Egypt has never supported any rebel group in any country.
“It’s the first time to hear we support any movement in any country, not in Ethiopia only,” Mubarak said to Al-Jazeera TV
“We have very good relations with Ethiopia. We cannot do this in any African or Arab country. This is not the way we deal,” the Egyptian President said.
It should be recalled that recently Egypt and Sudan refused to sign a new agreement over the utilization of Nile River waters, which Egypt depends on.
Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda who signed the new agreement in May 2010 argue that the agreement ensures equitable, fair and sustainable utilization of the Nile water among riparian states.
Observers are saying that the war of words between the two countries is related to the use of the Nile water, which Egypt and Sudan have agreed in 1959 to share 85 and 15 percent, respectively ignoring the rest of Nile Riparian countries including Ethiopia, which contributes about 86 percent of the water to the Nile.
“Egypt could not win a war with Ethiopia over the Nile River. If we address the issues around which the rebel groups are mobilized then we can neutralize them and therefore make it impossible for the Egyptians to fish in troubled waters because there won’t be any,” Ethiopian PM Meles Zenawi told Reuters.
“Hopefully that should convince the Egyptians that, a direct conflict will not work, and as the indirect approach is not as effective as it used to be, the only sane option will be civil dialogue,” Meles noted.