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Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry participated on October 27, 2019 in the opening session of the Core Group meeting of the Munich Security Conference (MSC), which is being held in Cairo for the first time, in the presence of the MSC Chairman, Wolfgang Ischinger, and Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defense of a number of Arab and African countries. The session was also attended by ambassadors and representatives of embassies and regional and international organizations accredited to Egypt, as it tackled the African perspective on keeping peace and enhancing stability.
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Counselor Ahmed Hafez stated that Minister Shoukry addressed, during his speech before the meeting, the main challenges facing the African continent, in particular the phenomena of terrorism and extremism, in addition to organized crime, human trafficking and arms smuggling, as well as the negative repercussions of the climate change phenomenon.
Foreign Minister also affirmed that Egypt attaches a high priority to the principle of African solutions to African crises, while presenting the role of the African Union, currently chaired by Egypt, in maintaining peace and security. In this regard, he noted the ongoing efforts aimed at developing the African peace and security architecture, as well as the strong political will of African Heads of State and Government to enforce the "Silencing the Guns in Africa by 2020" initiative.
Hafez added that FM Shoukry highlighted in his speech the Egyptian vision vis-à-vis peace and security issues in the African continent, which stems from the importance of adopting a comprehensive approach that addresses the root causes of problems threatening peace and security in Africa. This underlines the special importance of preventive diplomacy to prevent new crises, as well as mediation efforts to help resolve existing conflicts.
Moreover, Shoukry stressed that the principle of preserving the sovereignty of states and the central role of governments in formulating peace agreements and development plans should be a cornerstone of regional and international efforts aiming to achieve peace and security in the continent, and emphasized the need to coordinate all these efforts and to cooperate with various international partners of Africa in order to achieve this goal.
The Spokesperson also noted that Minister Shoukry reviewed Egypt's efforts in supporting and promoting African collective efforts to achieve peace and security in the continent, pointing out in this regard Egypt's hosting of the AU Center for Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Development (AUC-PCRD), as well as holding the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development on December 11-12, 2019 under the auspices of the President of the Republic. Organizing this forum comes in light of Egypt’s conviction of the close link between peace and stability in Africa on one hand, and sustainable development on the other.
It is worth noting that the Munich Security Conference is an annual conference hosted by the German city of Munich on international security and foreign policy, held for the first time in 1963. The core group of the conference addresses specific global issues and themes; its meetings are held in many cities across the world.