Africa: The 34th Ordinary Session of AU Executive Council Kicks Off

Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission Thomas Kwesi-Quartey

Addis Ababa — The 34th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council of the African Union (AU) has kicked off today at the AU Headquarter in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The Executive Council opening was addressed by various high level delegates of the African Union and UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA).

Addressing the Executive Council, Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat said the session is held just days before the 100th anniversary of the first Pan-African Congress.

He expressed the positive progress on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) as 'encouraging'.

However, he said "six countries are yet to sign and those who have already signed the agreement will very quickly carry out the process of ratification."

UNECA Executive Secretary, Vera Songwe, said on his part "We need to give a human face for refugees, returnees and internally displaced persons and tackle this complex issue towards durable solutions to forced displacement in the continent."

Ethiopia's high-level delegation led by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Workneh Gebeyehu, is participating at the Executive Council of the African Union.

The assembly of the Executive Council of the African Union comes ahead of the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union, which will be held on 10th-11th February 2019, under the theme "Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement in Africa".

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