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Erik Bettermann: “We must forge a global alliance for human rights”

1,600 participants at this year’s Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum in Bonn, Germany / The theme of next year’s conference, from 25 - 27 June 2012 will be education and culture

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The Director-General of Deutsche Welle, Erik Bettermann, has called for cooperation in forming a global “alliance for human rights”. Addressing the closing session of the fourth Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum in Bonn, Germany. Bettermann said human rights in the context of globalization “deserves our special attention. It concerns everyone, all over the world.” Bettermann suggested that the media have a particular responsibility to give more attention to the subject that has been the case up to now. People needed to be re-sensitized and better informed about the importance of human rights and global correlations, including in Europe, Bettermann said. Europe also needed to “shed its blinders and must not think first of others when it comes to human rights. Respect for human rights and their implementation always have to start at home.” The approximately 1,600 participants from more than 100 countries made the conference “a mirror of the human rights experiences around the world”. Deutsche Welle and other media at the conference bundled these perspectives. Bettermann said that they could increase their attention to stories that stimulate people to think and encourage them to get involved. The Director General reported that the conference had already delivered concrete results. He mentioned the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the European Broadcasting Union and the Council of Europe. These organizations intend to increase their cooperation and in particular give more weight to human rights and media freedom. Bettermann said human rights would remain on the agenda of the Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum. Next year the conference will address Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “Everyone has the right to education.” For three days from 25 through 27 June 2012 the focus will be on education and culture. The Director-General thanked partners and sponsors of the conference, especially the Foundation for International Dialogue of the Sparkasse in Bonn as co-host, the Federal Foreign Office, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, the State Chancellery of the State of North-Rhine Westphalia, the European Regional Development Fund, the City of Bonn as well as Deutsche Post DHL and all others who helped make the conference a success. 22 June 2011 40/11 Photos: http://www.flickr.com/deutschewelle/collections Audio recordings: http://soundcloud.com/dwgmf Twitter: http://twitter.com/dw_gmf YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/DWGMF2011

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