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UN-Civil Society Conf. To Be In Paris For 1st Time

Annual UN-civil society conference to be held in Paris for first time

8 July 2008 - A major United Nations conference which brings together civil society organizations from around the world each year will be held in Paris for the time, and will focus on human rights.

The conference, which is organized by the UN's Department of Public Information (DPI), will attract some 2,000 representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from 90 countries.

Normally held in New York, this year's event is being staged in early September in Paris to mark the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which was signed in the French capital in 1948.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will open the gathering, whose theme this year is "Reaffirming Human Rights: The Universal Declaration at 60" and which aims to highlight ways in which civil society can contribute to the advancement of human rights at the global, national and local levels.

To promote this theme, DPI has launched a website (www.un.org/dpi/ngosection/conference), in English and French, designed to provide useful information to NGOs which are participating in the conference.

The conference, which will be held at the headquarters of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), will emphasize participation through a series of roundtables, workshops and breakout sessions, as well as feature an art exhibit on the history of the Declaration.

ENDS

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