50th Anniversary of the Munich Security Conference. Young Foreign Policy Professionals Talk to Fabius and Zarif - First Munich Young Leaders from Iran, Afghanistan and Palestine

Hamburg, 28 January 2014. Just as in previous years the Munich Young Leaders are meeting at the same time as the 50th Munich Security Conference from 30 January to 2 February. For the sixth time in succession the project organized conjointly by Körber Foundation and Munich Security Conference is giving young foreign and security policy professionals from all over the world an opportunity to talk to leading international politicians. The Munich Young Leaders are for the first time welcoming participants from Iran, Afghanistan, Indonesia and Palestine. This year the young foreign policy professionals will be talking to the foreign ministers of France and Iran, Laurent Fabius and Javad Zarif. They are also going to be meeting with Israel’s defence minister Moshe Ya’alon and Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat.

To mark the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Munich Security Conference 50 former Munich Young Leaders from the first five years have been invited to attend the conference. One of them is Irakli Alasania from Georgia. In 2010, when Alasania was the youthful party leader of the "Alliance for Georgia," which was then an opposition party, he was a Munich Young Leader. He is now coming to Munich in his capacity as Georgian Minister of Defence. "The Munich Young Leaders are now an integral part of the security policy debate," says Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger, the chairman of the Security Conference. "The international security community stands to gain a great deal from the positive stance of the next generation." Ischinger is particularly pleased on account of the fact that the Munich Young Leaders network now includes more than 140 young foreign policy professionals from almost 50 countries.

Mahdi Zadehali, who is an Iranian diplomat and the first Munich Young Leader from Iran, thinks that it is very important that one of the issues that is going to be talked about in Munich is the relationship between his country and the West. Ever since the inauguration of President Rohani change has been in the air. »As the first Munich Young Leader from Iran, I am particularly looking forward to our discussions about my home country,« says Zadehali. »I am positive that the Munich Security Conference will be a great opportunity to further stimulate the positive dynamics we have recently been witnessing in the relationship between Iran and the West.« Along with their fellow Munich Young Leaders, Mahdi Zadehali, the Afghan diplomat Roya Rahmani, and Dana Erekat, who is an adviser at the Palestinian Ministry of Planning and Administrative Development, will make the voice of the young generation heard in Munich.

The Munich Young Leaders are parliamentarians, government officials, journalists, academics and entrepreneurs who work in crucial foreign and security policy areas. They have not yet reached the age of 40, and come from Germany, NATO member states and partner countries, and from strategically important states in the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East.

Go to www.munich-young-leaders.org for a list of Munich Young Leaders 2014 participants and if you need additional information.

If you are interested in talking to one or several Munich Young Leaders, we would be delighted to arrange an appointment.

Körber Foundation
International Affairs Department
Nora Müller
Mobile +49 / 170 / 917 82 63

28 January 2014, by MSC