Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has been appointed chairman of the African Union.
Sisi takes the office from Rwandan President Paul Kagame – who focused on creating an Africa wide free-trade zone during his tenure.
He is expected to focus on the fight against armed groups on the continent and rebuilding efforts of countries recovering from conflict.
However, human rights watchdogs, particularly Amnesty International, have expressed concern that Sisi’s leadership could harm the Africa’s human rights record.
“During his time in power, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has demonstrated a shocking contempt for human rights,” said Najia Bounaim, Amnesty’s North Africa campaign director:
Under his leadership the country has undergone a catastrophic decline in rights and freedoms.” End quote.
The post rotates yearly between the five regions of Africa.