The dam has strained Ethiopia's relations with Egypt and to some extent Sudan

The Sudanese Prime Minister, Abdalla Hamdok on Monday reaffirmed Sudan’s adherence to the leadership of the African Union in the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.

“Our official position continues to adhere to African Union’s leadership in the Renaissance Dam issue,” said Hamdok at a press conference in Khartoum.

Sudan and Ethiopia are discussing about Sudan’s return to the GERD negotiating table after Ethiopian Irrigation Minister arrived in Khartoum earlier in the day.

Sudan decided not to participate in a Ministerial meeting regarding the GERD that was convened on Nov. 21.

Sudan demands the GERD talks go beyond the level of Irrigation Ministers to the Leaders of the three countries and the African Union and U.S. observers be given a status of mediators, changes in which Egypt and Ethiopia apparently find no interest.

Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia have been negotiating under the African Union over technical and legal issues related to the filling and operation of the GERD.

Ethiopia, which started building the GERD in 2011, expects to produce more than 6,000 megawatts of electricity from the project, while Egypt and Sudan, downstream Nile Basin countries that rely on the river for its fresh water, are concerned that the dam might affect their water resources.