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World Refugee Day 2007 National Activities: Italy

World Refugee Day 2007 National Activities: Italy

20 June 2007

An Iraqi man and his child stand forlornly in the door of their spartan quarters in Amman, where vast numbers of Iraqis are believed to be sheltering.

UNHCR took part in a conference 20 June in Rome entitled "Intolerance breeds isolation." Others in the panel discussion included Italian writer Andrea Camilleri and Italian government officials, while an Ethiopian and a Rwandan refugee gave short presentations. More than 350 people attended the event, including a large number of foreign and local journalists. An anti-intolerance media campaign was launched. Popular radio and TV presenters Fiorello and Marco Baldini and Camilleri provided voice-overs for the campaign radio adverts.

UNHCR and the Italian Coastguard granted a humanitarian award to the captain and crew of the Spanish trawler, Francisco y Catalina, which rescued 51 Ethiopian and Eritrean nationals in the Mediterranean last year.

Photo exhibitions, multicultural food stalls and film screenings were among initiatives organized by local authorities in Agrigento, Sicily, from 20-30 June. The Naples town council organized a two-day conference on asylum from 19-20 June.