The 2nd Africa-Arab Summit, held in Libya today, ended on a High Note with the Strategy and its Implementation Roadmap adopted

The 2nd Africa-Arab Heads of State and Government Summit which was held in Sirte, the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya ended on a high note today with the Africa-Arab Partnership Strategy and its implementation roadmap, Joint Action Plan for 2011 to 2016, adopted. The 1st Africa-Arab Summit was held in 1977 in Egypt. The Summit was held against the backdrop of a revived interest, particularly by the Arab states, for a formalised relationship with Africa in the context of a changed geopolitical landscape, global economic meltdown, and concerns around climate change. The Summit was preceded by the Ministerial Meeting on Friday, 8 October 2010, and the Meeting of Senior Officials on Wednesday, 6 October, in Tripoli.

South Africa’s delegation was led by Deputy President, H.E. Kgalema Motlanthe. He was accompanied by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Maite Nkoana-Mashabane; Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Mr Ebrahim Ebrahim; South Africa’s Ambassador to the Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Mr Mohammed Dangor; and senior government officials.

The Summit emphasised that the Africa-Arab Partnership Strategy was a framework guiding the direction and content of joint action to be undertaken by African and Arab countries in the various political, economic, social and cultural fields. The leaders then committed themselves to mobilising the human and financial resources needed for the implementation of the Africa-Arab Partnership Strategy and the Joint Action Plan, through the existing and new financial resources, and also benefiting from the massive means of the private sector.

The Summit also called on the international community, and especially the Group of Eight (G8), to fulfill their commitments on reforming the international financial and monetary systems, improving the international trade conditions, relieving the burden of debts, increasing development assistance for developing and least developed countries in particular, and also called upon them, to meet the pledges made to help African countries to achieve sustainable development.

The leaders resolved further to harness their countries’ joint cooperation and experiences to assist each country from the two regions, particularly the least developed among them, in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015 – especially the targets related to poverty reduction; reduction of child and maternal mortality; achieving universal primary education and combating epidemics and diseases such as HIV and AIDS and malaria.

They also denounced terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and condemned crimes committed by terrorist groups as grave violations of basic human rights and an incessant threat to the national safety, security and stability of nations.

Both African and Arab leaders resolved to embark on a concerted effort to bring about comprehensive and essential reform to the United Nations to address the needs and aspirations of the peoples of both regions so that the UN and its institutions can effectively address international challenges. They further emphasised the need to strengthen the role of the UN General Assembly, and the need to accelerate UN Security Council reform and develop and extend its permanent membership to allow for the different geographical regions to participate in the management of the international system and the drafting of the terms of the international agenda.
The Heads of State and Government resolved to accord high priority to human resources development in their respective countries in order to build the knowledge societies that are indispensable in the world of today.

Furthermore, the leaders affirmed their full support to the Palestinian struggle against the Israeli occupation, and their right to practice their irrevocable national rights, including their inalienable right to self-determination and return to their homeland, and to those territories which have been illegally occupied since 1948, to live in peace and stability inside the borders of an independent and sovereign Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital.

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission and the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States were directed to present a joint report to the 3rd Africa-Arab Summit which will be held in Kuwait in 2013. The Report will cover an overall review of Africa-Arab cooperation; the progress achieved in the implementation of the Strategy and joint Action Plan; the performance of the follow-up mechanisms; as well as their appropriate recommendations on the required future action.

For more information, please contact the Chief Director for Public Diplomacy, Mr Saul Kgomotso Molobi on 082 940 1647, +27 12 351 0083 or e-mail him at Alternatively, please speak to the Deputy President Motlanthe’s Spokesperson, Mr Thabo Masebe, at +27 82 410 8087.

Issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation
OR Tambo Building

Soutpansberg Road
Pretoria, RSA

10 October 2010

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