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UNHCR to host international meeting on world's stateless, forcibly displaced, Dec 7th, 8th 2011

Briefing notes

UNHCR to host international meeting on world's stateless, forcibly displaced, Dec 7th, 8th 2011

8 November 2011

On December 7th and 8th this year UNHCR will be hosting a major international meeting here in Geneva on international protection and statelessness. This event is the political and diplomatic centerpiece of a year that has seen a series of full-blown international displacement crises, as well as a major push by UNHCR to combat statelessness - a problem affecting as many as 12 million people worldwide. In its 60 years, UNHCR has convened only one previous high-level meeting of this sort

The Meeting's main goal - at a time of international conflicts and economic strain - is to bring about strengthened support for the bedrock principles by which the international community has for more than half a century dealt with refugees, other displaced, and stateless people. 2011 has seen the 60th anniversary of the 1951 Refugee Convention, as well as the 50th anniversary of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. With the latter in particular, UNHCR has been urging UN member states to increase accessions and an historic treaty event to facilitate further accessions is planned for 18:00 on December 7th. In light of these landmark anniversaries, it is also envisaged that States and others will use the Meeting to make new commitments and consider new ways to deal with emerging challenges.

Those attending the Meeting are expected to include ministers of foreign affairs, refugee affairs or immigration, and will also include at least one head of state.

Journalists wishing to cover this event and who are not part of the Geneva Palais press corps will need to secure accreditation from the UN Information Service in Geneva. We are requesting that interested news organizations and individual journalists secure this accreditation by the end of November. Depending on the interest we receive between now and the end of the month, a media centre will be established in Room V at the Palais.

Details of the arrangements for media as well as background documents and information can be found at Updated information will be posted here as soon as it becomes available to us.

For further information on this topic, please contact:

  • In Geneva: Adrian Edwards on mobile +41 79 557 91 20