As the Kemet Boutros Ghali Foundation for Peace and Knowledge launched its first series of webinars, Ahram Online interviewed the foundation’s executive president, Ambassador Moushira Khattab.
“The Kemet Foundation was established by a group of eminent individuals to build on the legacy of my role model Dr Boutros Boutros Ghali,” explained Khattab.
The foundation, established a little over a year ago, was created by students and colleagues of Dr Ghali to promote dialogue, the free access to information as well as peace and knowledge.
Ghali (1922-2016) was the first Arab and African to serve as UN secretary-general in 1992, a period of great global challenges that faced the international organisation.
His tenure was a turning point in developing the organisation's work mechanisms and its methods of intervening to resolve conflicts peacefully.
He also developed the concept of preventative diplomacy and peacemaking, and he made great efforts in establishing an agenda for peacekeeping and maintaining it on the ground after the resolution of conflicts.
“I was a student of Boutros Ghali and my first encounter with him was at the faculty of political science in Cairo university when I was 16. He was teaching us about international law and international organisations, and he really epitomised what a mentor should be, someone who leads by example,” she said.
Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the Kemet Foundation has conducted three webinars.
The first addressed the general impact of the virus, the second focused on its impact on peace within the family, and the third addressed the impact on refugees, asylum seekers and displaced people.
The foundation brings together key decision makers and thought leaders both at the national, regional and international level.
Among the activities of the foundation is promoting scientific thinking among the youth and issuing awards for scientific excellence in international law and international regulation; scientific excellence in African studies; a prize for new diplomatic attachés at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; outstanding scientific contribution in the field of peacemaking and peacekeeping; and achievement in the fields of conflict resolution, democracy, and human rights, to name but a few.
“When you have access to knowledge, you will know that we are all equal and entitled to enjoy our human rights without discrimination based on religion, sex, ability, geographic location, education, or any other ground. So, this foundation really carries the message that Botrous Ghali promoted all his life,” she said.