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The Nile River and its tributaries have been critical to the survival of the people who live within their reach since antiquity. Political power, the survival of societies—indeed, life itself—has been determined by access to and control of the river’s waters. The political history of the region can be traced according to who controlled how much of the river. In modern times interstate relations have been and still are governed by the amount of influence each country has over the Nile and its tributaries. Although the Nile River stretches for more than 4,000 miles, its waters are a finite resource, and now 11 countries and millions of people depend on the waters for their livelihoods. Creating a basin-wide regime to manage the resource to the satisfaction of all is very important and a daunting task.