Buhari leaves for Peace Forum in Paris, France
Buhari leaves for Peace Forum in Paris, France

By Ismaila Chafe

President Muhammadu Buhari will depart Abuja on Friday for Paris, France, to participate in the first edition of the Paris Peace Forum which opens on Sunday and ends on Tuesday.

Mr Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, made this known in a statement in Abuja on Friday.

The Peace Forum is organised by the French Government and a number of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

The Forum is based on the “simple idea that international cooperation is key to tackling global challenges and ensuring durable peace.”

Adesina disclosed that the Nigerian President would join the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres and other world leaders in discussing contributions towards global peace while underscoring the imperative of collective action.

While in Paris, President Buhari will also join other world leaders to commemorate the centenary anniversary of the Armistice signed on Nov. 11, 1918 between the Allied Forces and Germany in the forest of Compiegne in France to end the First World War.

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During his visit to Paris, the presidential aide said, Buhari would attend a luncheon hosted by President Emmanuel Macron of France in honour of visiting heads of delegations.

“Before returning to Abuja, the President and his delegation will have an interactive session with the Nigerian Community in France,’’ Adesina said.

President Buhari will be accompanied to Paris by Governors Aminu Masari, Willie Obiano and Kayode Fayemi of Katsina, Anambra and Ekiti States, respectively.

Others include the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami; the National Security Adviser, retired Maj-Gen. Babagana Monguno; and the Director-General, National Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Abubakar.

NAN reports that the forum is designed to be the annual meeting for projects, ideas and initiatives which effectively contribute to better international cooperation on the key global issues, fairer and more equitable globalization and a more effective multilateral system.

According to organizers, over 70 Heads of State and Government, representatives from the major international organisations and stakeholders from civil society are expected to be among the several thousands of participants. Some 119 projects will be presented at the event.

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The Paris Peace Forum is part of the drive by the French President, Emmanuel Macron, to reaffirm the importance of multilateralism and collective action in responding to current global challenges.

The aim is to strive towards peace through better global governance and promote means of reducing international tensions including cooperation between States to confront cross-boundary challenges, collective management of global common goods and better regulation of the internet and communication.

Inspired by the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference, the forum aims to drive forward governance projects by showcasing them, using them as a basis for debates in various formats and promoting networking between project developers and relevant decision makers.

The Paris Peace Forum will be centred on five themes: peace and security, the environment, development, digital and new technologies and the inclusive economy.