Cairo, Egypt – H.E. Sameh Shoukry, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Arab Republic of Egypt, inaugurated the 23rd Annual Conference of the International Association on Peacekeeping Training Centers (IAPTC) at the Intercontinental Semiramis Hotel in Cairo, on 11 September 2017. The four-day conference brought together more than 250 participants from the global peacekeeping and crisis management community, including senior government officials, high-level representatives from the United Nations and regional organizations, leading training and research centers, as well as scholars and practitioners.
In his opening speech, Minister Shoukry welcomed participants in “the largest and single most important gathering of the global peacekeeping training community”. He emphasized that the conference comes at a time when Egypt is expanding and diversifying its contributions to UN peacekeeping--being the world’s 3rd largest contributor of military advisors, the 5th largest contributor of police and the 12th largest contributor of troops.
His Excellency highlighted the adverse changes taking place in the realm of peace and security, which he believes indicate “a historical turning point”, such as the continuous scourge of terrorism; protracted conflicts; large-scale voluntary and involuntary movements of people (unprecedented since WWII); the return to nationalism and populism, coupled with “identity-based politics”; as well as international disengagement from local/regional efforts for peace, security and stability.
Minister Shoukry also noted that the conference is “an invaluable opportunity” to discuss breakthroughs in neuroscience and its linkages with peacekeeping, and to exchange views about the centrality of people in conflict prevention and resolution. His Excellency concluded by indicating that it’s time for the IAPTC, under the upcoming presidency of CCCPA in 2018 (presidency is automatically assumed by the host of the current year at the conclusion of the IAPTC’s annual general meeting), to explore additional ways and means in which it can enhance and expand its contribution to the evolution of peacekeeping training.
Egypt has been actively involved in the development of peacekeeping doctrine and policies; CCCPA hosted the African consultations of the peacebuilding review in 2014, and the MENA consultations of the peacekeeping review in 2015.
The IAPTC is a voluntary association of centers and institutions working on peacekeeping research and training. The association aims to promote better understanding of peacekeeping, its means and ends, and the different types and mechanisms used for peacekeeping training. As of 2017, CCCPA assumed the role of the Secretariat of the IAPTC.