Meeting With Officials of the Finnish CMI (Crisis Management Initiative)
The Council hosted on Monday morning February 24, 2020, each of: Dr. Ville Brummer, Programme Director at CMI (Crisis Management Initiative) founded by former President of Finland Martti Ahtisaari, with Dr. Yasar Qatarneh, Senior Advisor to CMI for the Arab Region. The delegation was received by Chairman of the Council and its Secretary General, Ambassador Dr. Mounir Zahran, and Ambassador Hisham Al-Zemiti, where the meeting covered the following:
The aim of their visit to Cairo which is to resume cooperation with Egypt, that was in existence from 2010 and 2013, and as part of their regional programs (Eastern Europe – Middle East and North Africa – Sub-Saharan Africa – Asia). Moreover, they look forwards to holding a symposium with the Egyptian Council for Foreign Affairs on developments in the region, while highlighting that their current interests revolve around issues such as Libya, Palestine, Iraq and Yemen, and that Egypt, as an influential state within its region, can contribute to what they called Cross-Regional Dynamics.
They had previously organized a training program on capacity building during the period from 2010 to 2013 in coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Interior, the Egyptian Cabinet’s Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC), and Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies (ACPSS). Delegations from Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria participated in the program (the latter did not participate after 2011), and that training program was divided into three phases addressing: Capacity building in terms of identifying problems, finding solutions to those problems, then finding a mechanism to implement the solutions. And they have not implemented any program with Egypt since 2013.
Brummer mentioned that they seek to listen to the different parties to the conflicts and encourage them to initiate dialogs, and that their role is advisory in order to seek solutions to disputes if possible, and in response to the Council’s inquiry he mentioned that they submit annual and quadrennial reports to the Finnish government on the results achieved, and that what they achieve contributes to supporting the Finnish government, and facilitates communication between the direct parties to the conflicts they focus on, such as Yemen and Libya.
In response to an inquiry about their stance towards political Islam and the negative role it plays with the support of the West in destabilizing the countries of the region since 2011, and that it is necessary for them to deal with Egypt and the region on the basis of the current reality, which is based on the complete rejection of political Islam by the peoples of the region. The Finnish guest responded that they have no position on political Islam and that what matters to them is the success of their mediation, rapprochement among parties, and to be in communication with all parties, even with those who sabotage reaching solutions.
He stated that they are in contact with the Director of the Office of His Excellency the Ambassador, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs for African Affairs, to discuss the possibility of establishing cooperation with Egypt.