Wednesday, 19 January 2011



14 January 

(ANSAmed) - TRIPOLI, JANUARY 14 - A large group of parliamentarians, intellectuals, university professors, doctors, organisation figures and representatives of a number of professional sectors, all of African origin, are travelling from all around Europe to Tripoli for a conference beginning tomorrow. The roughly 400 representatives of what has been called "the African diaspora" will be received by Colonel Muammar Gaddafi until January 17, as part of the first ever "historic conference on African migrants", to discuss ways of improving the living conditions of Africans living in Europe.

Tomorrow's conference will also be attended by a number of African immigrants residing in Italy, consisting of thirty people from sector organisations originating from Cameroon, Nigeria, Morocco, Egypt, Ghana, Benin, Senegal, Somalia and Eritrea. The guest of honour, the Italian Democratic Party deputy of Congolese origin, Jean-Leonard Touadi, is expected to arrive in Tripoli this evening. Touadi is scheduled to meet institutional figures from the Libyan Parliament, as well as a number of local officials, for "discussions on immigration and on dialogue between Libya and European countries, with particular attention to the issue of cooperation between Europe and African countries", organisers say.

The conference's packed schedule is aimed at setting up a legal organisation, the International Union of African Migrants, which will "systematically" monitor the situations of immigrants, with particular focus on the condition of women and emigrated children.

One session will be dedicated to "rights and duties of the African immigrant", while another will target "alternatives to illegal immigration".

As part of the conference, a meeting is scheduled at the Islam Call Society on "racism and religions", which is to be attended by Egyptian Coptic authorities. The main aim of the meeting, explains Alfa-Niaky Barry, chair of the International Forum for friends of the Europe-Africa partnership, is to "unite compatriots from the African diaspora around a table, and attempt to talk with a single voice about needs, rights, wellbeing and prosperity". In preparation for the summit, the organising committee held meetings in 2010 in Paris, London, Madrid, Lisbon, Frankfurt, Tripoli, Rome and Catania. (ANSAmed)