Egypt and Sudan view the dam as a threat to vital water supplies, while Ethiopia considers it essential for its electrification and development.
Egypt and Sudan have been warning Ethiopia against filling the dam, but there are conflicting reports coming out of the country.
The countries decided to restart stalled negotiations and finalise an agreement over the contentious mega-project within two to three weeks, with support from the African Union.
Cairo has been reduced to a mere observer in the Libyan conflict as Turkish drones in the service of the UN-recognised Tripoli government alter the battleground equation.
Ethiopian leadership fears that Washington might brush aside their concerns and blindly favour Egypt, a country that has been identified as the main source of the Nile River for centuries.
Egypt's interior ministry said they killed at least 17 militants in raids in Cairo and in Fayoum, four days after a car filled with explosives wrecked outside the county's main cancer hospital, killing at least 20 people.
The Horn of Africa appears to be geared towards a new order set off by global competition over strategic interests.
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