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UNHCR Executive Committee next week

Briefing notes

UNHCR Executive Committee next week

26 September 2003

UNHCR'S 64-nation Executive Committee, our governing body, gathers in Geneva on Monday for its 54th annual session. High Commissioner Ruud Lubbers will open the five - day "ExCom" meeting in the Palais des Nations with a keynote address shortly after 10 a.m. on Monday. The Committee's guest speaker this year will be Mr. Jan Egeland, Emergency Relief Coordinator, OCHA, whose remarks will follow the High Commissioner's.

The Committee reviews and approves UNHCR's programmes and budgets and advises on protection matters. It sets international standards with respect to the treatment of refugees and provides a forum for wide - ranging exchanges among governments, UNHCR and its numerous partner agencies.

The meeting - in Salle XIX - is open to media, who may observe proceedings from either the left side observation gallery or the upstairs gallery. Multiboxes will be available in the galleries if you want to record the speeches. Our video unit will tape the speech by Mr. Lubbers and Wednesday's address by Erika Feller, UNHCR's Director of International Protection. We'll provide footage upon request. A press release with the main points of Mr. Lubbers' address will also be circulated on Monday. The annual meeting closes on Friday, 3 October. The High Commissioner is scheduled to hold a press conference afterwards in this room to summarise the session's main decisions. This is tentatively set for 12:30 p.m., but we'll have a better idea of the schedule later in the week and will advise you of the exact time in advance.