On the 24th and 25th of October, in Palermo, the Representatives of the 57 OSCE member states, the six OSCE Partner countries for Mediterranean Cooperation – Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia – and numerous international organizations will meet at the OSCE Mediterranean Conference to discuss the flows of migrants and refugees in the Euro-Mediterranean region.

According to the Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano: “next year Italy will assume the OSCE Presidency, but the foundations of this very important mandate will be placed in this Mediterranean Conference. Our goal is to strengthen in the OSCE member states the awareness that a joint response to the migration crisis and the challenges from the Mediterranean is needed. This is why we have chosen Palermo for such an international meeting. Sicily was the place where Arabs and Normans formed not only a unique artistic style in the world that still shines as a UNESCO World Heritage Site but also a fundamental model of social integration and religious tolerance among different peoples”.

Angelino Alfano, the OSCE Chairman-in-Office (Sebastian Kurz) and OSCE Secretary-General (Thomas Greminger) will open the proceedings of the Conference on October 24th, 2017 at 9:30.  During the Conference, Italy will provide the opportunity to reiterate the need for greater attention from the OSCE to the challenges arising from the South, in particular to Mediterranean issues.

The program also provides for a « High Level Political Session », chaired by Alfano, with the oral presentations of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office and General Secretary, the Vice-Presidents of the OSCE, as well as of representatives of international organizations. According to the Farnesina, on the agenda, there will be an “event” with the Attorney Nicola Gratteri on the “Connections between drug trafficking, organized crime and terrorism in the Mediterranean Region”.

The Conference, which will witness the participation of over 30 delegations and Libyan Foreign Minister Mohamed Taha Siyala as « invited by the Presidency » (although Libya is not a partner country of the organization), could also be the occasion for a views exchange on the issue of security.

Maria Elena Argano

 

For further information:

Corriere del Mezzogiorno Site : http://corrieredelmezzogiorno.corriere.it/palermo/cronaca/17_ottobre_23/migranti-sicurezza-palermo-conferenza-mediterranea-dell-osce-a8df3c20-b7bb-11e7-a918-737504981ad0.shtml

Farnesina Site: http://www.esteri.it/mae/it/sala_stampa/areagiornalisti/notestampa/nota-di-accreditamento-stampa-aggiornamento_0.html

Info Africa Site: https://www.infoafrica.it/2017/05/15/conferenza-mediterranea-a-ottobre-a-palermo-per-parlare-di-migrazioni-e-sviluppo/