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By NELSON WESONGA & FREDERIC MUSISI

Egyptian authorities have announced plans to open a defence office in Uganda to enhance military cooperation between the two countries notwithstanding long standing differences over the sharing of the River Nile waters.

The Egyptian ambassador, Mr Ahmed Abdel-Aziz Mostafa, on Tuesday said it is “rare” practice for countries to have both an embassy and another office purposely for defence matters but “Uganda was distinguished for this service by Cairo.”
Mr Mostafa made the revelation at a meeting with journalists in Kampala. The defence office will officially be opened next week on Wednesday.

Uganda and Egypt have on several occasions clashed verbally over the River Nile; and the latter threatened “war” but ambassador Mostafa, said the office will deal with cooperation of the two countries on several fronts, including fighting terrorism.

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Egypt has refused to sign the Entebbe Accord, a framework of countries (Egypt, Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia, Rwanda, DRC, Eritrea, Tanzania and Kenya) for the cooperative sharing of the Nile river waters.

State minister for Foreign Affairs Okello Oryem said: “The office will basically deal with our UPDF here and other military related issues in the region.”

musisif@ug.nationmedia.com

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