“Embrace Diversity, End Racism” at the International Sevens Rugby tournament in the City of George, South Africa

12 December 2009

The Human Rights Day banner

On the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Pretoria worked closely with the South African Rugby Union (SARU) and the City of George. During the International Sevens Rugby tournament that was held from 11 to 12 December, UNIC actively promoted this year’s slogan “Embrace Diversity, End Racism”.

With 18 countries participated in the tournament, the event was attended  by over 11,000 spectators from different races, religion, background and culture and become a link by sports and human rights.

Throughout the tournament the Human Rights Day logo was displayed on one of the score boards and the slogan was regularly read out by the stadium announcer. Just before the finals on the second day, ten young players from the local rugby team “Die Arende(The Eagles) carried a big Human Rights Day banner on the pitch, while the stadium announcer read the UN Secretary General’s message.

This event was broadcast live on SuperSport and was aired in more than 140 countries worldwide.

This major event was the second very successful collaboration between UNIC Pretoria and SARU, after an earlier happening during the “Stand Up, Take Action” campaign. Both experiences convinced both UNIC Pretoria and SARU to establish a formal partnership for the years to come.

UNIC Director participates in panel on Capitol Hill on International Religious Freedom

11 December 2009

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Washington Director Will Davis participated in a panel discussion organized by the Royal Netherlands Embassy and the US Commission on International Religious.

Discussion among members of the panel at the US Gongress

Director Davis was joined on the panel by the Dutch Ambassador, Renée Jones-Bos, as well as representatives from the State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, and civil society organizations.

UNIC Director highlighted the UN’s work in support of religious freedom, focusing on the work of the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, as well as the work of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN’s Human Rights Council and other UN entities.

Human Rights Day 2009 celebration in Dakar

10 December 2009

 

«Chacun à une contribution à apporter dans la construction d’un Etat de Droit où règne la justice, l’équité», a déclaré le Coordonnateur resident du Système des Nations Unies au Sénégal, M. Bouri Victor SANHOUIDI qui s’est aussi réjoui des avancées «significatives» du Sénégal dans le cadre de la protection et la promotion des Droits de l’Homme marquées par le passage réussi du Sénégal devant l’Examen Périodique Universel (EPU) du Conseil des Nations Unies pour les Droits de l’Homme.

Le Chef de la délégation du Sénégal et défendeur du rapport était le même Maître Madické NIANG alors Garde des Sceaux, Ministre d’Etat, Ministre de la Justice.

Les messages du Secrétaire général de l’ONU et du Haut Commissaire aux Droits de l’Homme ont été respectivement lus par Messieurs Toussaint KONGO-DOUDOU, Directeur du Centre d’Information des Nations Unies (CINU) et par Mahamane CISSE-GOURO, Directeur du Bureau Régional pour l’Afrique de l’Ouest du Haut Commissariat DES Nations Unies aux Droits de l’Homme (HCDH/BRAO).

Les comédiens de la troupe «Kocc Barma» de Rufisque, Waly SECK, une vedette montante de la musique sénégalaise ainsi que les chanteuses du TNDS ont, à leurs manières, magnifié les Droits de l’Homme. Cette commemoration qui incluait aussi un panel à Thiès organisé par le CSDH sur le thème de la Journée, clôturait ainsi la «Quinzaine des Droits de l’Homme» initiée par les Agences du Système des Nations Unies au Sénégal pour marquer la célébration, au Sénégal, de la Journée des Droits de l’Homme sur le thème: «Optez pour la diversité, mettez fin à la discrimination».

La Quinzaine avait démarré, le 25 novembre 2009. Elle s’est poursuivie avec des projections de films dans la région de Dakar. Le 9 décembre 2009, le HCDH/BRAO a organisé, en partenariat avec l’Institut des Droits de l’Homme et de la Paix de l’Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar (IDHP/UCAD), le Programme commun des Nations Unies sur le VIH/SIDA (ONUSIDA), l’Organisation Internationale pour les Migrations (OIM) et le Bureau des Nations Unies pour l’Afrique de l’Ouest (UNOWA) une conférence, à l’Amphithéâtre UCAD II sur le thème: «Les Droits de l’Homme et la Non Discrimination».

Des experts, professeurs d’université, des Représentants du Corps diplomatique ainsi que de nombreux étudiants ont participé aux débats. Les 9 et 10 décembre 2009, en collaboration avec la Radio «Nostalgie FM», le CINU a organisé des émissions interactives basées sur des questions– réponses sur les Droits de l’Homme, à l’intention des jeunes auditeurs (élèves et étudiants) des régions de Dakar, de Thiès, et de Kaolack.

UNIC Cairo partners with civil society, universities to commemorate the Human Rights Day

10 December 2009

Participants of a panel discussion

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Cairo commemorated the Human Rights Day in Cairo University and the American University in Cairo (AUC) in partnership with the Middle East Association for Peace and Human Rights and the “Bennaa” project for capacity building in human rights.

The commemoration in partnership with the Faculty of Mass Communication of the University of Cairo and the Middle East Association for Peace and Human Rights took the form of a panel discussion with the students and professors, as well as newly recruited journalists graduated from the faculty.

Discussions dedicated to the role of mass media in advancing human rights culture gave way to a range of connected issues such as discrimination against women, indigenous people, migrants, minorities and Islamophobia. The representative of the Palestinian authority stressed the need for the UN’ efforts to protect indigenous people to take into consideration the situation of the Israeli-Palestinians as indigenous people struggling to preserve their right to existence on their lands as well as their cultural and religious rights.

At the American University of Cairo, the event took the form of an award giving ceremony for best media articles on human rights organized in collaboration with the UNDP project “Benaa” dedicated to capacity building in human rights in Egypt. The event witnessed an important public and media turn out as well as the presence of the EU Ambassador in Cairo, representatives of the Foreign Minister and the National Council for Human Rights and the UN Resident Coordinator.

During these events Mr. Fethi Debbabi, UNIC Cairo Officer in Charge delivered the message of the Secretary-General for the day. Emphasizing on the two key words of “diversity” and “discrimination”, Mr. Debbabi said the latter constitutes a setback for humanity and the negation of the concept of Human rights while diversity calls for embracing the wide human perspective and wealth.