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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
20 July 2010


Press Release
PAL/2130
PI/1945

              Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Background Release


UNITED NATIONS MEDIA SEMINAR ON MIDDLE EAST PEACE TO ADDRESS ROLE OF MEDIA,

INCLUDING NEW MEDIA, IN ADVANCING PEACE PROCESS, IN PORTUGAL, 22-23 JULY


A United Nations-organized media seminar will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, from 22 to 23 July, focusing on the role of media, particularly new media, in advancing the Middle East peace process.

The Lisbon seminar, which is mandated by the General Assembly,is the seventeenth in a series organized by the United Nations Department of Public Information, and will be held in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Portugal.

The objective of the seminar is to enhance dialogue and understanding between Israelis and Palestinians, while sensitizing public opinion to the question of Palestine and the peace process.  In view of the tenth anniversary of Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, the seminar will also focus on the role played by Israeli and Palestinian women in achieving peace and security in the Middle East.

Approximately 120 participants, from the Middle East — including Israelis and Palestinians — as well as from other parts of the world, are expected to attend.  Participants will include current and former policy-makers, Government officials, diplomats, civil society organizations, members of parliament, academia, and journalists.

Representing the host country, Secretary of State for European Affairs of Portugal Pedro Manuel Lourtie will address the seminar at the opening session.  Other Portuguese participants will act as keynote speakers, moderators or panelists, including Jorge Sampaio, High Representative of the Alliance of Civilizations and former President of Portugal.

United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information Kiyo Akasaka will deliver a message at the opening session from Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.  The Chairman of the United Nations Committee on Information, and Permanent Representative of Cape Verde to the United Nations, Ambassador Antonio Pedro Monteiro Lima, will moderate one of the panel discussions. 

Delivering the keynote address at the opening session on behalf of Robert H. Serry, United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process and Personal Representative to the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian National Authority, will be Richard Miron, Chief Public Information Officer, Office of the Special Coordinator.

The seminar will include five panel sessions:  the role of Israeli and Palestinian media in reducing tensions and creating a conducive environment for peace; new media versus traditional media:  allies or adversaries in furthering the peace process; the role of Israeli and Palestinian women in achieving peace and security in the Middle East; harnessing new media for positive change in the Middle East; and Civil Society Initiative:  the role of Israeli and Palestinian mayors in contributing to peace and security in the Middle East.

For further information, please contact Dysane Dorani, Chief, Palestine, Decolonization and Human Rights Section, Strategic Communications Division, Department of Public Information, e-mail:  dorani@un.org; tel:  +1 917 288 1364; or Ana Mafalda Tello, Desk Officer for Portugal at the United Nations Regional Information Centre in Brussels, e-mail:  tello@unric.org; tel:  +1 351 96 796 6568.


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For information media • not an official record

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