A meeting of the foreign ministers of African Union member states kicked off in Addis Ababa on Monday.
The meeting began with a moment of silence to commemorate late South African national hero Nelson Mandela, who died last December at the age of 95.
Held under the chairmanship of Ethiopian Foreign Affairs Minister Tedros Adhanom, the meeting is expected to tackle recent developments in the Middle East, along with means of empowering the African Court of Justice and Human Rights to deal with international crimes.
“One of the high moments during the Executive Council meeting will be the election of [the] Peace and Security Council for a two-year mandate, as well as the election of the president and vice president of the Pan-African University Council,” read a press statement issued by the African body.
The meeting will precede a scheduled summit of African heads of state, due to kick off Thursday under the banner “Agriculture and Food Security.”
Monday’s foreign ministers’ meeting will set the summit’s agenda and submit them for endorsement by African leaders.
The summit will focus on means of reducing poverty, promoting economic growth and creating wealth through agricultural development.
African leaders at the summit are also expected to assess the achievements and challenges associated with the implementation of a continental food security and agriculture development plan.
They will also look into the situation of African countries currently experiencing armed conflict, including the Central African Republic (CAR) and South Sudan.