27 March 2008
Press Release
Note No. 6134

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Note to Correspondents





In its continuing efforts to highlight important issues and developments that sometimes do not receive sufficient attention, the Department of Public Information has released the fourth annual list of stories it feels the world’s public and media may wish to find out more about.

“The media are our partners in getting the word out about what needs to be reported.  But we all work with constraints and are guided by different priorities.  I believe we can help highlightstories that may otherwise be forgotten,” reminds Kiyo Akasaka, Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information.  “So when we talk about the fight against malaria, for example, we are not discounting the importance of AIDS or tuberculosis -- but since we hear more about those diseases, we could also try and raise the profile of the strides made to eradicate malaria, an entirely preventable and curable disease.”

The list is not meant to be representative of the spectrum of issues the United Nations is involved in -- nor does it reflect the Secretary-General’s priorities as such.  The stories are intended to engage a global audience in further inquiry, with a view to promoting a better understanding of how some issues might be given greater exposure.  As in previous years, there are dimensions of conflicts that are neglected (Southern Sudan and Afghanistan) -- or a phenomenon that has been somewhat overlooked (suffering of girl soldiers or the work of human rights rapporteurs).  In other instances, inadequate attention may have been paid to the progress made in resolving crises ( Northern Uganda) and pandemic preparedness (bird flu).

The latest list of Ten Stories will be announced at United Nations Headquarters in New York today during the daily press briefing at 12 p.m.  To assist the press, the Department of Public Information will provide additional information about the stories, including contacts for United Nations focal points on respective issues.  All of these materials will be featured on a special Ten Stories webpage (www.un.org/events/tenstories) that can also be accessed through the United Nations News Centre portal, at www.un.org/news/.

If you are interested in covering the stories further and require more details on the overall project, or would like to arrange an interview or obtain additional photos or B roll footage, please contact:  Anjali Das, tel.:  1 212 963 0072, e-mail:  das@un.org; or Mita Hosali, tel.:  1 212 963 1333, e-mail:  hosali@un.og.

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For information media • not an official record