Egypt's ambassador to Ethiopia Osama Abdel Khaleq said that Egypt's counter-terrorism efforts aim to demolish corrupt intellectual systems that promote rejection of others and consider them apostates, adding that these efforts have got the respect of the African people.
These efforts to fight corruption also aim at restoring the ability to enforce law and controlling all outlawed and terrorist groups, which violate the law, Abdel Khaleq, who took the diplomatic post in Addis Ababa in October 2018, said in an interview with CBC, ON E, DMC and al-Hayat channels.
Attending the Arab and African Youth Forum held in Aswan from March 16-18, Abdel Khaleq said that Egypt has also worked to drain the financing sources of terrorism, adding that such practices are very useful for the African continent.
Preparations for Egypt's chairmanship of the African Union took pace over many months before President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi assumed the chairmanship on February 10, Abdel Khaleq said, as it has been known that Egypt will lead the AU since January 2018.
Explaining Egypt's agenda for the presidency of the AU, Abdel Khaleq said that it has been divided into several axes, including pushing forward the regional economic integration through focusing on the infrastructure. He noted that African leaders are following up on the development of the infrastructure in Egypt in an unprecedented way.
The development in infrastructure projects include duplicating the energy production, and the volume of street networks, Abdel Khaleq said, explaining that Egypt has decided to focus on this axis due to its technical experience that can benefit other African states.
A mini-summit will be held on July 8, Abdel Khaleq announced. He said that this summit will address the distribution of the roles between the African Union and the regional economic bodies.
The second axis will focus on implementing the African Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) and working on the relevant technical areas. The CFTA will increase the volume of African intra-trade and boost development rates.
On his Twitter account, Abdel Khaleq said that the inauguration of the forum proves that Egypt is capable of chairing the African Union, and also reflects President Sisi's care for the issues of the youth.
The forum kicked off with the participation of 1,500 youths, and is set to tackle topics such as the future of scientific research and health care, the impact of advanced technology and innovation in Africa and the Arab region.
The AYF was launched with a ceremony that celebrated Egypt's chairing of the African Union and shed light on Egypt's position as a meeting point between the Arab and African civilizations.
The opening ceremony gathered a number of senior officials, representatives and public figures from Africa such as Mariam al-Mansouri, the UAE's first female fighter pilot; Moussa Faki, the African Union Commission chairperson; Nelson Mandela’s grandson; Syrian journalist and anchor Zaina Yazigi and Ahmad Ahmad, president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
A set of Arab and African countries have participated in the AYF including Nigeria, Djibouti, Chad, Ghana, Burundi, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Gambia, Sudan, Gabon, Iraq, Palestine, Guinea and Mozambique.