The Millennium Development Goals Report of 2011, the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration for Human Rights, The State of World Population, The State of World’s Children, Survey of Economic and Social Developments in the ESCWA Region, and The State and Trends of the Lebanese Environment were among the titles displayed by the UN Family in the Beirut Arab and International Book Fair that opened 2 December and lasted until 15 December.
Several UN agencies operating in Lebanon joined forced to put on view some of their latest publications and reports at the Fair, which was organized at the Beirut International Exhibition and Leisure Center and kicked off with a ceremony officiated by Lebanon’s Prime Minister Najib Mikati, high Government officials and diplomats. Participating UN agencies included ESCWA, UNDP, the UN Information Centre (UNIC) in Beirut, UNESCO, ILO, WHO, FAO, UNFPA and UNRWA.
It was the third such participation by the UN system in this major regional annual cultural event. As in previous years, the Fair’s UN booth saw a significant demand for UN publications and handouts. Several employees from various UN agencies and a number of volunteering university students once again staffed the UN booth and helped visitors select the publications they need and answered questions on the nature of UN agencies’ work in Lebanon and other relevant topics. Documentary films highlighting UN programs and projects were also shown in the booth.
Touring the Book Fair after the inaugural ceremony, Lebanese Premier Mikati, Lebanese Information Minister Walid Al Daouk and other senior officials visited the UN booth and glanced through displayed publications.
The book fair, yearly organized by the Arab Cultural Club in cooperation with the Lebanese Publishers Union, draws a large number of publishing houses and academic institutions from Lebanon, the region and other countries around the world.
Throughout this annual trade event, organizers orchestrate many special programs for visitors, including sessions on writing poetry and stories and on music for students who traditionally come in droves to the popular exhibition.
This event provides the United Nations a platform to network with many Lebanese, Arab and other visitors from all walks of life with a view to enhancing awareness about the wide range of programs and activities undertaken by the Organization locally, regionally and globally and shedding light on UN issues and priorities.