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Al-Sisi invited to African Union summit

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Foreign ministry eyes AU reinstatement ahead of Egypt panel report presentation

A handout picture made available on June 8, 2014 by the Egyptian presidency shows President elect Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (L) reviewing the honour guard during the handing over of power ceremony in Cairo. Sisi was sworn in as Egypt's president, formalising his de facto rule since he deposed the elected Islamist last year and crushed his supporters.   (AFP PHOTO / HO / EGYPTIAN PRESIDENCY)

A handout picture made available on June 8, 2014 by the Egyptian presidency shows President elect Abdel Fattah al-Sisi (L) reviewing the honour guard during the handing over of power ceremony in Cairo.
(AFP PHOTO / HO / EGYPTIAN PRESIDENCY)

President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has been invited to attend an African union summit in September, as the foreign ministry looks to secure the reactivation of Egypt’s activities in the union since its July 2013 suspension.

Al-Sisi was invited to the Extraordinary Summit on Employment and Poverty Eradication, which is scheduled to take place in Burkina Faso’s capital, Ouagadougou, on 6-7 September, confirmed foreign ministry spokesman Badr Abdelatty.

The invitation was extended by Burkina Faso President Blaise Compaoré, who hopes Al-Sisi will attend and that he looks forward to reaping the benefits of Egypt’s experience in job creation in Africa, according to state-run MENA.

Egypt’s membership to the African Union was suspended on 5 July, just two days after Al-Sisi, who was then the defence minister, announced the overthrow of former President Mohamed Morsi. The union’s Peace and Security Council (PSC) viewed the ouster as “unconstitutional”, which violated its charter.

The foreign ministry said on Monday that it will be closely following a Tuesday meeting of the PSC, where the High-Level Panel for Egypt will present its report on Egypt, gathered over three separate visits. It will be presented by head of the three-man panel former Malian President Alpha Oumar Konaré.

A ministry spokesman confirmed in a statement that “intensive contacts” were being made with all of the 15 countries represented in the PSC as well as other African nations and “senior officials in the institutions of the African Union.”

The spokesman said the aim of this activity is to secure a PSC resolution “consistent with the recommendations of the High-Level Panel… on the speed of the resumption of Egypt’s activities of the African Union”.

The panel “affirmed the correctness” of the decision to suspend Egypt’s activities in a report presented to the PSC in January. Over their three visits the panel met with high-level interim government members as well as Morsi and opposition leaders.

In the aftermath of the suspension the ministry repeatedly expressed its opposition to the suspension and also deployed envoys around Africa to deliver this message and explain the interim government’s view of the situation in Egypt.

 

About the author

Joel Gulhane

News Reporter

Joel Gulhane is a journalist with an interest in Egyptian and regional politics. Follow him on Twitter @jgulhane


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