The 29th AU Summit kicks off with the 34th Session of the Permanent Representative Committee

Under the theme of Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investments in the Youth”, the 29th African Union Summit opened Tuesday 27 June 2017, at the African Union Headquarters, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, with the Thirty Fourth (34th) Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives’ Committee (PRC).

The opening ceremony took place in the presence of the Chairperson of the AU Commission, Deputy Chairperson, AUC Commissioners, all the Ambassadors of the 55 African Union member states based in Addis Ababa, representatives from the diplomatic corps, the international community, civil society, private sector and invited guests among others.

In his first address to the PRC as Chairperson of the AU Commission, H.E. Mr. Moussa Faki Mahamat, emphasized on the relations between the PRC and the new Commission. “Dealing with emergencies, and trying to identify the strategic lines of our action, we have acquired a serious awareness of the need to change certain crucial aspects of the Commission’s working methods. The result is the necessity of addressing the relations between our two organs” he added.

The Chairperson reaffirmed the Commission’s commitment to work with the PRC, in order to give full measure to the desirable cooperation and synergy between the two institutions. “We have a lot to achieve with limited means”, he said, adding, “our success depends on the coherence of our actions and our commitments, whatever the level of our responsibilities”.

The Chairperson highlighted the main issues to be considered during the PRC meeting, which include: Reform of the African Union, for which the follow-up of the implementation, in accordance with the July 2016 and January 2017 summit decisions, has been jointly entrusted to the Presidents Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Idriss Deby Itno of Chad and Alpha Conde of Guinea. This is in addition to migration, peace and security, and implementation of the decision of the 0.2% levy on imports of eligible products in order to ensure in predictable, sustainable and equitable financing of the AU.

H.E. Mr. Mahamat also highlighted the partnerships of the AU, noting “our strategic partnerships merit a new examination in order to make them more relevant to the requirements of our Agenda 2063, and to the pillars of the reform of our Union”. He called on the PRC to finalize the study on the evaluation of the AU strategic partnerships and to present it to the deliberative bodies. (The full speech of the Chairperson of the AUC is on the AU website www.AU.int)

In her remarks during the opening ceremony, H.E. Mrs. Fatoumata Kaba Sidibe, Chairperson of the PRC and Ambassador of the Republic of Guinea, expressed appreciation for the efforts already made by the AUC Chairperson in the search for solutions to the crises and conflicts on the continent.

She noted, “upon his entry into office, he undertook missions to areas of tension as well as to the United Nations to find durable solutions to these conflicts. The mission to New York, during which AU-UN cooperation was evaluated and culminated in an agreement, will undoubtedly strengthen the AU cooperation with these institutions”.

She called on the PRC members to be comprehensive and clear when taking decisions and recommendations on the various reports, so as to facilitate the work of the policy organs, noting that the PRC report will take the form of draft decisions on matters relating to strategic issues, the AU theme of this year, and peace and security in Africa. (The full speech of the Chairperson of the PRC is on the AU website www.AU.int)

For three days, the 34th Session of the PRC will consider the reports of the various activities of their sub-committees, reports of the AU organs and their activities. The PRC will further exchange views on the draft agenda, as well as the draft Decisions and Declarations of the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council, and those of the 29th AU Assembly, before adopting its report.

The PRC session is one of three statutory meetings of the AU Summit, which include the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council, and the 29th AU Assembly.

This summit is historic, as it is the first summit with the full participation of all the fifty five African countries, after the admission of the Kingdom of Morocco during the 28th AU Assembly in January this year. It is also the first summit for the new Commission of the AU, which was elected in Jan 2017.

The 34th Ordinary Session of the PRC will conclude on 29th June 2017, with the adoption of its report to be submitted to the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council scheduled to hold from 30 June to 1 July 2017.

Distributed by APO on behalf of African Union Commission (AUC).

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Source:: The 29th AU Summit kicks off with the 34th Session of the Permanent Representative Committee

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Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Nigeria

The Secretary-General condemns the series of suicide bombing attacks on 25 and 26 June in Maiduguri, Borno State in Nigeria.

The Secretary-General extends his condolences to the people and Government of Nigeria for the loss of life. He wishes a quick recovery to those injured and hopes that those responsible for this act will be swiftly brought to justice.

The Secretary-General reiterates the United Nations’ support to the Government of Nigeria in its fight against terrorism and violent extremism.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations – Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

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Source:: Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Nigeria

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Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus V.Makei meets the Minister of External Relations of Angola

On June 26, 2017 the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, Vladimir Makei, met with the Minister of External Relations of the Republic of Angola, Georges Rebelo Pinto Chicoti, who is currently paying an official visit to our country.

The parties discussed the current state and prospects for Belarus–Angola political, trade and economic cooperation.
It was noted that today Angola is the largest and the most active trade partner of Belarus among countries of the Southern Africa. To this extent, the parties agreed that it is necessary to take measures in order to enhance the current level of collaboration.

In particular, the parties expressed mutual interest in facilitating joint projects in the framework of mechanization and industrialization programs in Angola, including establishment of an assembly production of Belarusian tractors and other machinery, as well as service and logistical centers for Belarus-made goods.

During the negotiations, special attention was paid to issues of cooperation in agriculture. The Angolan delegation noted the importance to explore and comprehensively apply the experience of the Republic of Belarus in order to achieve food security of Angola, as well as to approach the markets of neighboring countries.

At the meeting the sides emphasized the importance of establishing direct interaction between the ministries, governmental organizations and business circles of Belarus and Angola. The parties agreed to facilitate the exchange of high-level official visits.

The sides stressed the necessity to use various mechanisms of dialogue in political and economic areas, including holding regular consultations between the Foreign Ministries and establishing of the Joint Committee on trade and economic cooperation.

As a result of the visit, the two Ministers signed the Joint Communique, which reflects the main agreements reached during the negotiations.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus.

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Source:: Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus V.Makei meets the Minister of External Relations of Angola

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Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s talks with Foreign Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia Dr Workneh Gebeyehu

On June 26, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held talks with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Dr Workneh Gebeyehu, who is in Moscow on a working visit. The two ministers praised the traditional friendly relations between Russia and Ethiopia, and mutually beneficial cooperation in various areas, confirming their shared commitment to step up trade and economic ties with a focus on the implementation of large-scale joint projects in Ethiopia, including in the energy sector, extraction of minerals and the development of infrastructure. They also highlighted the importance of relying on mechanisms provided by the Intergovernmental Russian-Ethiopian Commission on Economic, Scientific, Technical and Trade Cooperation, and the mutual interest in the promotion of ties in the field of education, science and high technology.

Mr Lavrov and Dr Gebeyehu had a detailed discussion on the topical international and regional issues, including conflict settlement in Africa, and examined the situation in the Horn of Africa, Somalia, South Sudan, the Sahara-Sahel zone, and in the Great Lakes Region. Both Russia and Ethiopia strongly believe in the importance of consolidating international efforts to combat terrorism with the UN playing a central coordinating role.

Distributed by APO on behalf of The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.

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Source:: Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s talks with Foreign Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia Dr Workneh Gebeyehu

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