20 September 2017

Africa Must Be Allowed to Play Rightful Role in International Affairs, Moroccan Minister Tells UN

Photo: Cia Pak/UN Photo
Nasser Bourita, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the Kingdom of Morocco, addresses the general debate of the General Assembly’s seventy-second session.

With the world at a crossroads - battered by climate change, threatened by terrorism and extremism, and struggling with deepening inequality - it is not only time to bolster multilateral cooperation, but to make use of the vital capacities that can be provided by the dynamism of the African continent, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Morocco told the United Nations General Assembly today.

Addressing the Assembly's annual general debate, Nasser Bourita cited a raft of global ills, and noted that while globalization has driven the international economy it has also increased employment instability and widened the economic gaps between and within nations. Similarly, the Internet has created unprecedented opportunities for growth and development but it has also provided a space for extremists and terrorist groups to promote their nefarious aims.

"All this means our collective working mechanisms need to be reformed," said Mr. Bourita, stressing that Morocco is convinced that a global organization that is effective and truly multilateral can help solve the problems the world is facing. Morocco is equally convinced that Africa can no longer be seen as a burden on the global community - the continent must play its role in tackling global challenges, including broader development.

"Africa has not held its rightful place in the [international arena]. It should not be dealt with based only on how much assistance it receives, or how "many agenda items it takes up" at UN meetings. Indeed, Africa is imbued with immense human and natural resources. In that regard, Morocco viewed South-South cooperation as a major opportunity for forming development partnerships that could assist African countries, bolster foreign direct investment and increase African participation, with increased equal footing, in global mechanisms.

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