DAR ES SALAAM, Nov 13, 2004 (Xinhua) — All preparations have been complete for the first summit of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region on issues of peace, stability, reconstruction and development, the Tanzanian foreign minister said on Saturday.
Briefing reporters about the summit, Jakaya Kikwete said that the two-day meeting would adopt a Dar es Salaam Declaration that is expected to outline the principles for the roadmap of peace anddevelopment in the Great Lakes Region.
Angola, Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, the Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia will participate in the summit as the core members of the Great Lakes Region.
The summit, slated for Nov. 19 and 20, will draw Ethiopia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe as co-opted countries.
Other countries to attend the summit as observers are Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Portugal, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States.
The United Nations and the African Union will be the co-sponsors and facilitators of the summit that also attract such continental and regional institutions as the European Union, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the East African Community, and the South African Development Community.
The foreign minister said that more than 300 delegates are expected to gather in Dar es Salaam, where a two-day foreign ministerial meeting is slated prior to the summit.