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34 African leaders, heads of international institutions to attend AU Summit

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Meles Alem

ADDIS ABABA | Xinhua | At least 34 African leaders and heads of international institutions are expected to attend the upcoming African Union (AU) Summit, the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Thursday.

The AU has announced that the 37th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Heads of State and Government is scheduled to be held in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa on Feb. 17-18. The 44th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council, which brings together African ministers of foreign affairs, will precede ahead of the leaders’ summit on Feb. 14-15.

Meles Alem, spokesperson for the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, while briefing the media on Thursday, said more than 34 African leaders and higher officials are expected to take part in the upcoming AU summit, and the number could increase in the coming days.

According to Alem, among the high-level dignitaries are 24 presidents, two prime ministers, a king, five vice presidents, and two leaders represented by their foreign ministers.

He said among notable heads of international organizations who are expected to attend the summit include United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of Arab League Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development Workneh Gebeyehu, as well as heads of different UN agencies and representatives of other organizations.

According to the AU, the upcoming summit will have a number of agendas, which include continental peace and security, trade and integration, education and skills, agriculture and climate change, governance and human rights, as well as gender and youth empowerment. ■

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