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Forum To Tackle Climate Change Impacts On Sustainable Peace In Africa

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – This year’s edition of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development holding in Cairo, will interrogate the interface between climate change and sustaining peace as well as development efforts in Africa, according to the organisers.

The event which is slated for 21-22 of June in a hybrid format with sessions online and in-person, has special significance as it will be building up to the 27th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 27) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to be hosted by Egypt in November.

The Aswan Forum was launched in 2019 during Egypt’s chairmanship of the African Union, and is held annually under the auspices of His Excellency Abdelfattah El-Sisi, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt.

It provides a high-level platform that brings together African leaders, as well as leaders from international and regional organizations, the private sector and civil society, visionaries, scholars, key experts to thoroughly discuss the challenges facing the African continent.

Notably, this creates a veritable platform for the stakeholders to propose holistic and innovative approaches to strengthen the interlink ages between peace, security, and sustainable development in cooperation with a number of international partners .

The Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peace building acts as the Secretariat of the Forum. Meanwhile, the preparatory process has already started with a series of workshops seeking to develop forward-looking and action-oriented recommendations for consideration during the Forum.

The Strategic Partners of the event include the Government of Japan, the Government of Sweden, and the African Development Bank Group.

Participants will include heads of state, and representatives of the United Nations, African Union, and AfDB group. This forms part of the Bank’s leading role in the sector. Other efforts include its collaboration with the Sahel Alliance. The Bank has also produced groundbreaking research on building resilience in fragile situations.

The theme for the 3rd edition theme of the Forum is, “Africa in an Era of Cascading Risks and Climate Vulnerability: Pathways for a Peaceful, Resilient and Sustainable Continent”.

Building on the work of previous years, the 2022 edition will benefit from the deliberations of relevant preceding events, such as the African Development Bank Group’s Annual Meetings and the 15th Conference of the Parties (COP15) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification.

In addition, the Forum will also address a number of Africa’s priorities, including enhancing cooperation to combat terrorism, overcoming the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, achieving food security, and advancing post-conflict reconstruction and development efforts; reflecting Egypt’s keenness to advance the African cooperation agenda at a critical juncture in international relations.

This year’s edition of the Forum takes place in the context of an increasingly volatile international situation. Disruptions in energy and commodities markets have resulted in price spikes that are negatively affecting many African countries that rely on food and fuel imports. In response, the AfDB has approved a $1.5 billion emergency facility to avert a food crisis.

The rapidly evolving situation comes at a time when Africa is still grappling with the health and socio-economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, with women and youth being hit the hardest. Concurrently, protracted conflicts and violence continue to destabilize parts of the continent. These challenges have been compounded by the rising threat posed by climate change.

This cascade of multi-faceted risks is putting African national capacities to the test in an unprecedented manner, as well as sub-regional and continental frameworks.

Nonetheless, Africa’s pro-active stance is reflected in several recent developments and initiatives which seek to address some of these challenges. These include the African Union Center for Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Development, and the AfDB’s 3rd Strategy for Addressing Fragility and Building Resilience in Africa (2022-2026).


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