Ahmadinejad to Attend 50th Anniversary of OAU in Ethiopia
TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will take part in the ceremonies commemorating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, later this month, a spokesman said on Tuesday.
The announcement was made by Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Abbas Araqchi during his weekly press briefing in Tehran today.
The Iranian foreign ministry spokesman noted that Iran has observer status at OAU and it usually takes part OAU’s summit meetings.
OAU is celebrating its 50th anniversary from May 18 to 30 in Cairo.
Several African and Arab diplomats and representatives of international and regional organizations will attend the OAU’s 50th anniversary.
OAU was established in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in May 1963 on signature of the OAU Charter by representatives of 32 governments. A further 21 states have joined gradually over the years, with South Africa becoming the 53rd member in May 1994.
The OAU aims to promote the unity and solidarity of African States, co-ordinate and intensify their cooperation and efforts to achieve a better life for the peoples of Africa, defend their sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence, eradicate all forms of colonialism from Africa, promote international co-operation, giving due regard to the Charter of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and co-ordinate and harmonize members’ political, diplomatic, economic, educational, cultural, health, welfare, scientific, technical and defense policies.
President Ahmadinejad’s administration has striven hard to maximize relations with the African continent.
Iran is also an observing member of the AU and has shown an active presence in previous AU summit meetings.
The country is considered as one of the AU’s strategic partners along with India, Japan, China, several South American states and Turkey, while Tehran is also believed to be prioritizing promotion of its economic and political ties with the African states.