Tue, 21 Jun 2022 - 01:16 GMT
Tue, 21 Jun 2022 - 01:16 GMT
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi virtually delivering a speech at the opening of the 3rd edition of Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development on June 21, 2022. Press Photo
CAIRO – 21 June 2022: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi delivered Tuesday a speech at the opening of the third edition of Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, stipulating that food security is the main challenge Africa has to deal with at present.
The president said that the platform, launched when Egypt was chair of the African Union in 2019, is convening this year while the world is embroiled in tensions that have long-lasting repercussions on the political, economic, and developmental levels.
The president urged African countries to join forces to counter the negative impact of the crisis on food security and energy security, and that was added to the health, social and economic downturn caused by COVID-19.
"In that context, I would like to highlight the food crisis experienced by the African continent at present, as it may take its toll on the safety and stability of our societies. That (predicament) mandates taking a bundle of quick and effectives measures, in coordination with international partners and the international community, that would support African states in containing it. Those must include the diversification of food sources, securing supply chains to the continent, and sustainable measures to preserve food security. That is by using advanced technology in agriculture, and increasing our agricultural production with the aim of achieving self-sufficiency," the Egyptian president explained.
The chief of state pointed out that the African Union (AU) is currently prioritizing work in the realm of food security, given the challenges of water scarcity and high prices. He added that the series of crises that have been happening must not pressure Africa to discontinue its action towards establishing peace and security, achieving sustainable development, combating terrorism and associated phenomena, such as arm smuggling, widespread organized crime, human trafficking, and illegal migration.
Speaking of the efforts deployed by Egypt on that front, the president showcased that the country founded the Sahel Counterterrorism Center, hosts the AU Center for Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Development, and is delivering training for troops joining peacekeeping missions in Africa.
President Sisi also encouraged African officials to actively present their visions on climate change mitigation and adaptation at COP 27, and push for the implementation of relevant international pledges. That is in light of Egypt's hosting of the summit on November 7-18 in Sharm El Sheikh, and especially that the continent is struggling with desertification, water scarcity, and shortage in natural resources.