On 12. Juni 2019 UPF Austria organized a roundtable discussion in the IAPD office which is connected to Peace Museum Vienna on the topic „Horn of Africa & Middle East – Perspectives for Peace and Development“. The main speaker was Mr. Hashem Mandee, a journalist who was born in Iraq and studied Theater, Film and Communications Science in Vienna Universities and Fine Arts in Baghdad. He has started his career in Baghdad Radio and TV as News and Program presenter. He continued his career as freelancer Journalist for several Arab and International Medias among them BBC world service – Arabic section, Aljazeera and Al Riyadh Newspapers in Saudi Arabia. Later he worked as an editor at Radio Free Iraq / Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty in Prague and then moved to the USA and worked there for Alhurra TV and Radio Sawa in Virginia, USA as a Broadcaster.
The Horn of Africa region which includes Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somalia plus Kenya and Sudan, and the Middle East countries, including the Gulf countries, notably Saudi Arabia and Yemen, bordering the Red Sea, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean at Bab al-Mandab, are important areas for securing world peace and development. The importance comes from the conflict in the Gulf region, which is a danger for global peace and security by threatening to close the Strait of Hormuz and sever the global economy and international navigation. The source of this importance is also the threat of narrowing or cutting the navigation on the Strait of Bab El- Mandeb as well.
The speaker highlighted the dangers of military and security escalation in the region and political rivalry and the importance of separating the political differences from the economic interests of the nations and peoples of the region and the world, and advocated for the acceptance of compromises of the outstanding problems and guarantees the coexistence and avoiding harming national, regional and international interests.