CAIRO - Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi said on Monday he would keep "all options" open to defend Egypt's water supply from being affected by a giant new dam Ethiopia is building on the Nile but he added that Cairo did not want war.
"Egypt's water security cannot be violated at all," he said in a televised speech to Islamist supporters. "As president of the state, I confirm to you that all options are open.".
He later added: "We are not calling for war, but we will never permit our water security ... to be threatened."
Using emotive language to underline the importance of the Nile to Egypt, he quoted a popular song about the river and said: "If it diminishes by one drop then our blood is the alternative."