NAIROBI, Kenya, May 24 – President Uhuru Kenyatta’s invitation to the G7 Summit in Italy gives Kenya and the region a unique opportunity to convince the world of the need to unite in the war on terror, which remains a real threat.
National Counter Terrorism Centre Ambassador Director Martin Kimani says the President is likely to highlight the impact of terrorism on the country’s economy and that of the region and why travel advisories only embolden terrorists.
“This is a time when all democratic countries and all free people need to stand together against extremism and terrorism because, at the heart of this security challenges, it is a hatred of freedom, diversity and the freedoms that we hold so dear here in Kenya,” he said.
“The attacks by terrorist groups do not discriminate between countries… the response now needs to become a brave response that sees that we are all in this together. When travel advisories are issued in Kenya, it let the terrorist win because that is what they want to achieve. Our friends should now allow the terrorist to have such a victory.”
To him, the President invitation to the G7 is a big development for Kenya.
“G7 is an enormously important group of countries and it makes up the top economies in the world and it is also characterized by being a group of democracies.”
The Summit comes barely a few days after a major terror attack in the United Kingdom and also days after Kenya lost 8 security officers to terrorists.
Other than security, the President has been invited to speak on the timelines and challenges brought about by innovation as a factor of economic growth and development on the African continent, during the event that will be attended by among others US President Donald Trump.
“We started with choices have consequences and statements about limiting of diplomatic contact. Since then, it has been a sea change and today Kenya is really at the top table of global decision making,” he stated.
“His Excellency the President will not be going there to make G7 decisions but he will be speaking to the G7 about the most pressing challenges going on in the world.”
The two days Summit will kick off on Friday.
The G7 comprises Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States all of whom represent over 60 per cent of the global net wealth.
Estimates indicate that the G7 nations account for at least 46 per cent of the global Gross Domestic Product and slightly over 30 per cent of the purchasing power globally.
The Summit is also expected to discuss foreign policy, global threats and economy, and review economic co-ordination.
Italy currently holds the presidency of the G7.