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        General Assembly
14 August 2012

Original: English

Sixty-seventh session
Item 55 of the provisional agenda*
Questions relating to information

Questions relating to information Report of the Secretary-General


    The present report, prepared in response to General Assembly resolution 66/81 B, provides highlights of recent communications campaigns undertaken by the Department of Public Information on such key issues as the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, the Millennium Development Goals, international peace and security, human rights, the question of Palestine and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development. The activities of the network of United Nations information centres, a key component of the Department’s outreach in the field, are also reviewed. The report highlights the media-related services of the Department, including the progress made by its multimedia website and news centre, as well as press releases and meetings coverage. It also provides an update on the outreach services of the Department, including its work with the creative community, support for the activities of the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, and relations with non-governmental organizations. A summary of the Department’s partnerships with institutions of higher learning and research through the United Nations Academic Impact initiative is also highlighted.



II. Strategic communications services

A. Thematic issues


The question of Palestine and the United Nations

19. The 2012 International Media Seminar on Peace in the Middle East, organized by the Department, was held on 12 and 13 June in Geneva. The event, planned in cooperation with the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland, brought together journalists, bloggers, activists, film-makers, academics, policymakers, diplomats and government officials from the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Israel, the wider Middle East region, Europe and the United States of America, as well as senior United Nations officials. Panel discussions examined the prospects for peace in the approach to the twentieth anniversary of the Oslo Accords; how the Arab Spring has affected media coverage of the question of Palestine; the role of women’s activism and the media in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and in the wider region; civil society in media and film in the Middle East; and youth activism in the Middle East — evolving attitudes towards and tools for social change and democracy. The event was promoted extensively across online platforms, including Tumblr and Twitter.


IV. Outreach services

Creative community outreach initiative

56. The Department continues its 22-year partnership with New York Festivals, handing out annual awards for film and television programming, public service announcements and radio programming. This year, the winning entries in the three categories highlighted gender equality, collaboration between Israelis and Palestinians and indigenous culture. The awards were presented between April and June.



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