Wars in Gaza, Ukraine to top agenda of Munich Security Conference

Wars in Gaza, Ukraine to top agenda of Munich Security Conference
Wars in Gaza, Ukraine to top agenda of Munich Security Conference

Africa-Press – Tanzania. Political leaders from some 50 nations are due to gather in Munich on Friday for an annual security conference to discuss international conflicts, geopolitical challenges and transatlantic relations.

Christoph Heusgen, former German ambassador and the Munich Security Conference (MSC) chairman, said Israel’s President Isaac Herzog and Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh will be among the key speakers.

“Israeli foreign minister will also be here, the decisive actors will be here, including Egypt’s foreign minister. I really hope that this chance could be used to come together, to make some progress here in Munich, to end the suffering of the people,” Heusgen told reporters.

UN chief to open conference

The 60th Munich Security Conference will begin with the opening speech of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, where he is expected to renew his call for an immediate humanitarian cease-fire to allow more aid into Gaza.

The opening ceremony will feature a live performance of Israeli and Arab musicians from the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, in order to “carry a powerful message of peace and reconciliation” according to the organizers.

Top diplomats from Western and Arab countries are scheduled to hold a ministerial meeting on the margins of the conference to discuss diplomatic efforts for a humanitarian pause, and for the release of captives held by Hamas.

Top guests of MSC 2024

During the three-day conference, US Vice President Kamala Harris, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, and China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi will also deliver speeches.

Other speakers include European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Belgium’s Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, UK’s Foreign Secretary David Cameron, and US special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is scheduled to travel to Munich following his visits to Paris and Berlin. The Ukrainian leader is expected to deliver a speech at the conference on Saturday, and hold several bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the event.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba will also attend the conference, and meet his G-7 counterparts and other top officials, to discuss the latest developments on the war with Russia.

The conference comes as Ukraine faces critical shortages of ammunition, especially artillery shells, while Russia has intensified its attacks targeting the country’s military-industrial complex.

The organizers of the event said there will be around 60 panel discussions in the next three days on the international conflicts and the most pressing security challenges, including energy politics, climate crisis, food security, and artificial intelligence.

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