Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi confirmed that the upcoming UN Conference of Parties on Climate Change (COP27(, which will be held in Sharm El-Sheikh this November, aims to be a milestone in international action towards turning promises into actual implementation on the ground.
He stressed that the priority in the coming period should focus on the implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement.
In his speech at a high-level session on the sidelines of the Petersberg Climate Dialogue that was held in Berlin on Monday, Al-Sisi said that all scientific estimates and reports clearly confirm that climate change has become an existential threat to many countries and societies around the world in such a way that it is no longer possible to postpone the implementation of pledges and commitments related to global climate.
He added that the heat wave that the European continent is currently witnessing is the best evidence of the correctness and accuracy of these estimates.
Moreover, he said that should be a motivator to intensify the required work, especially since all parties have agreed that the priority in the coming stage is to implement the Paris Agreement and implement the nationally determined contributions within the framework of the international principles governing the work of international climate, foremost of which is equity and joint responsibility of varying burdens and the varying capabilities of states.
“A key aspect of the Egyptian presidency of the conference is currently focused on making the global climate summit a milestone in international climate action, which contributes to maintaining international momentum and affirming the commitment of all governmental and non-governmental parties to turn their promises and pledges into actual implementation on the ground,” the president said.
“This ensures the process of transition to a low-emission economy capable of dealing with and adapting to the negative effects of climate change and contributes to enhancing the volume, quality, and mechanisms of climate finance available to developing countries, which is the most important aspect and cornerstone to enable those countries to play their role in this effort.”
Furthermore, Al-Sisi affirmed that Egypt will spare no effort to ensure the success of the COP27, pointing out that the Petersberg Dialogue is an opportunity for dialogue and coordination to rally international consensus on climate change issues, stressing that Egypt has strengthened its steps towards adapting to the negative effects of climate change and will spare no effort in confronting it, praising the leading role of Germany in facing climate change.
He also stressed that Egypt is hosting the climate summit in a global context characterised by tracking challenges such as the food crisis, as well as the accumulation of debt and the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic, and the war in Ukraine.
Additionally, the president warned that Africa is at the heart of these challenges and is affected by them more than any other region and that it is important to exert efforts to enable African countries to benefit from their wealth, pointing out that climate change is an existential threat.
He also called for the need to reach clear visions to support the efforts of developing countries to use clean energy.
For his part, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stressed that the climate change crisis is an urgent crisis that must be addressed by achieving a form of climate moderation by seeking to reduce the temperature to one and 1.5°C.
Scholz also said during the opening of the high-level session that “the floods and other climatic phenomena that the world witnessed at the beginning of the year necessitate seeking to reduce the temperature to 1.5°C, and this is the goal we have in mind.”
Furthermore, the chancellor stressed what Egypt has done in the previous period, praising the implementation of the high-speed train. continuing.
He also pointed out that we must provide a secure future for future generations by confronting climate change, asserting that achieving the goal of climate moderation should be the way for the future.
“What we have been witnessing over the past 30 years in Africa and Asia confirms that a green transition is necessary, and this task falls on all of us in order to make a better life for the world’s peoples by switching to clean energy sources instead of conventional and fossil fuels,” he concluded.
At the joint press conference, President Al-Sisi received a question from a German journalist regarding human rights in Egypt, which he answered with: “The topic of human rights in Egypt is very important, and such a question is always asked at such conferences, and the truth is, this time I want to answer it differently.”
“Allow me to invite you — and invite all those who are interested in the matter — to visit Egypt, and we will give you the opportunity to meet and talk with everyone and to convey what you see to the public opinion in Germany.”
Al-Sisi then called on journalists to stand up for religious rights, women’s freedoms, and the prospect of providing a decent life for all in Egypt.
“I talk about freedom of expression and attending the sessions of the National Dialogue that are currently ongoing in Egypt; please convey to the public opinion in Germany what you will see. Is there really a great concern for freedom in Egypt, or not?” he added.
“The picture may not be clear to you here, so you should visit Egypt.”
“When German officials visit Egypt, I always insist that they meet with the people, talk to them, and hear from them,” he asserted.
“It is very important that you know how it is; we are interested in the matter, as we respect our people and love them, and this is our historical and humane responsibility towards our people,” Al-Sisi concluded.