Reconciliation Advocates from JRS Conflict Zones Gather for Conference on World Refugee Day
(Siem Reap, Cambodia, 14 June 2013)-JRS delegates from Syria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, Colombia and other countries will gather in Siem Reap to share their experiences working among refugees and for reconciliation. They hope to learn from the history of Cambodia and its efforts towards peace reintegration, and the ECCC reconciliation. The meeting will include a visit to Tra Peang Thmor-a huge lake built by forced labor during the Khmer Rouge period. Two of JRS Cambodia's staff were among the laborers there and witnessed starvation, death and drowning.
June 20th is International Refugee Day. Jesuit Refugee Service International is hosting a press briefing on the 18th of June launching a photo exhibition Sanctuary and Sustenance along with a short film that demonstrates some of the challenges in the lives of refugees. In Cambodia, JRS cares for refugees from Myanmar-including Rohingya, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Somalia. 2013 is the first year that UNHCR has not had an office in Cambodia, but the regional director of UNHCR Bangkok is scheduled to visit Cambodia during International Refugee Week. Refugee Status Determination is conducted by The Royal Cambodian Government's Refugee Office under the Ministry of Interior. In January 2013, JRS Cambodia published a legal report on statelessness along with stories of people in Cambodia who face statelessness. JRS has also led the Cambodia Campaign to Ban Landmines since 1994 and has recently issued a call for Cambodia to sign the Arms Treaty and the Cluster Munitions Convention.
The meeting in Mindol Metta Karuna, Siem Reap is part of JRS's worldwide effort to accompany, serve and advocate for refugees and provides an opportunity to discuss with people from different countries who have shared experiences of exile, forced displacement, repatriation and reconciliation. The conference will also be joined by professor Steven Pope from Boston College-an expert in reconciliation, an Indonesian Islamic professor and a Cambodian professor who is a Buddhist monk. The assistant director of JRS International, Fr. Ken Gavin and Sister Maryanne Loughry, former Arrupe tutor at Oxford University and now adjunct professor at Boston College, will also be present. Participants will arrive by Sunday evening.
LINK to JRS International's press release:http://www.jrs.net/news_detail?TN=NEWS-20130608085131
Press contacts: Tori Duoos (e: firstname.lastname@example.org p: +855.(0)95.982.868) and Devin Morrow (e: email@example.com p: +855.(0)89.970.575) For further information contact: Denise Coghlan (e: firstname.lastname@example.org p: +855.(0)92.331.501)