A two-day high level dialogue on peace and security organized by Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the United Nations opened on Thursday at Common Wealth Resort, Kampala.
The dialogue, the second of its kind since the first in 2015 in Djibouti, is primarily looking at the state of peace and security in the Horn of Africa and mediation and conflict resolution in the volatile region.
The UN and IGAD signed a Framework of Cooperation on peace and security 2015 encompassing among others: information sharing, conflict analysis, programming and joint initiatives.
In her opening remarks, UN Resident Coordinator in Uganda, Rosa Malango, said a number of successes have been registered for the last three years.
“Since 2015, a lot of positive developments have been witnessed in the region: change of leadership in Ethiopia and the shift in diplomatic, economic, and security relations with her neighbour Eritrea and the rest of the region; increased influence of the Gulf States on the Horn – what some scholars have called the scramble for the new frontier – rise in violent extremism; downturns in some economies, among others,” said Malango.
The IGAD Executive Secretary, Amb. Mahboub Maalim said the high level dialogue aims at reviewing the state of the Horn of Africa region; enhance coordination between IGAD and UN Department of Political Affairs and to evaluate preventative and early warning options for the region.
“The Dialogue will also provide an opportunity to explore avenues for discussing extra-regional issues, and their impact on the Horn of Africa,” said Maalim.
The Foreign Affairs State Minister, Henry Okello Oryem said it is no longer going to be the business as per the new precedent being set by the new Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed Ali.
The 42 years old Head of State, youngest in the region, incredibly restored relations with Eritrea, introduced internal reforms and currently embarking on Somali crisis.