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KING TO SHARE IDEAS FOR GLOBAL PEACE, TRADE

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ANTALYA, TÜRKIYE: How best can we tackle the global turmoil in a more diplomatic way?

This is the question that His Majesty the King and more than 15 heads of State and government are expected to deliberate upon, at the third Antalya Diplomacy Forum (ADF), which is aimed at finding solutions to the upheavals in various parts of the world today. The forum forms part of the King’s working visit to Turkiye. The ADF seeks to find ways to better use diplomacy in the current state of affairs through an interactive and thought-provoking platform. It will take place from tomorrow until March 3, 2024, and is to be officially opened by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Among the leaders expected at the forum are the Presidents; of Madagascar, Andry Rajoelina; Zimbabwe, Emmerson Mnangagwa; Togo, Fabre Gnassingbe; Central African Republic, Faustin-Archabge Touadera; Democratic Republic of the Congo, Felix Tshisekedi; Somalia, Hassa Sheikh Mohamud; Djibouti, Ismail Guelleh; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria, Rumen Radev; and Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu. Also present are the Prime Ministers of Moldova, Dorian Recean; Burundi, Gervais Ndirakobuca; Montenegro, Milojko Spajic; and Hungary, Viktor Orban. According to the ADF, this will be the third edition. It will gather heads of State and government, ministers, diplomats, business leaders, academics, think-tankers, youth and media representatives ‘for an all-encompassing debate.’

According to the ADF secretariat, the overarching theme of this year’s forum will be ‘Advancing Diplomacy in Times of Turmoil’. It aims to serve as a thorough reflection and the means for searching for a peaceful way out of the turbulent period our world is going through. It lists these challenges as ongoing wars, acts of terrorism, irregular migration, the rise of xenophobia and Islamophobia, unforeseen risks of AI, climate change, natural disasters, pandemics and widening socio-economic gaps from a non-exhaustive list of global challenges.

Worrying

The erosion and subsequently the loss of trust in the rules-based international order are also listed as a worrying trend that is undermining the predictability of the environment in which States operate. The ADF also notes that these challenges may also act as agents leading to structural changes in the global political, economic and security landscape. It adds: “Moreover, as one third of the world’s population is heading to the polls in 2024, many questions about the impact of elections on pressing international issues, as well as concerns about AI-manipulated disinformation and fake news will be on the international agenda.” Forming part of His Majesty’s delegation are the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Pholile Shakantu, Prince Mbuyisa, Princess Siphila and Chief Officer Chief Mgwagwa Mdluli, among others.

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