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Events in 2013

Solemn Commemorative Meeting

Monday, 25 March 2013, 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm, General Assembly Hall, United Nations, New York.

The President of the General Assembly convened a special commemorative meeting of the General Assembly on the occasion of the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, on Monday, 25 March 2013, at 3:00 pm.

Statements were delivered by the President of the General Assembly, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, representatives of regional groups and of the Host Country.

The keynote address was given by Professor Ali Mazrui, Director of the Institute of Global Cultural Studies (IGCS), and Albert Schweitzer Professor in the Humanities, Binghamton University. The Cameroon National Ballet also performed.


Friday, 22 March 2013,  7:00 pm - 9:00 pm, General Assembly Hall, United Nations, New York.

UN Foundation Girl Up Champion Monique Coleman hosted the event featuring performers from Africa, the Caribbean and the United States:

Speakers at the concert included:

Cultural and Culinary Evening and Exhibit Reception

Thursday, 21 March 2013, 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm, Main Gallery, Visitors’ Lobby, United Nations, New York.

The event began at 6:00 pm with a poetry recital to honour the 100th anniversary of the birth of Aimé Césaire, organized jointly with the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie and Bureau de la Martinique.

Françoise Vergès, President of the French National Comité pour la Mémoire de l’Esclavage (2008-2012), introduced the Recital. The evening included:

The exhibition "Forever Free: Celebrating Emancipation" was comprised of panels retracing the history of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, presenting heroes and activists, the fight for emancipation, and the legacy of slavery today.

A copy of the Emancipation Proclamation, signed by President Abraham Lincoln and Secretary of State William Seward, along with a signed copy of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was also on display during the commemorative week, 18-25 March.

The exhibition was free and open to the public from 11 February – 26 March 2013. Information on visiting United Nations Headquarters can be found at the UN Visitors Centre.

Cultural presentations and culinary displays from Africa and the Caribbean followed.

Presentation and Book Signing

Thursday, 21 March 2013, 4:30 pm – 6:00 pm, United Nations Bookshop, United Nations, New York.

A presentation of Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery (2012) by authors

and of Black Patriots and Loyalists: Fighting for Emancipation in the War for Independence (2012) by author

This event was open to the public. Information on visiting United Nations Headquarters can be found at the UN Visitors Centre.

Film Screening: "Lincoln" (Steven Spielberg, 2012) (2 hrs 30 mins)

Wednesday, 20 March 2013, 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm, United States Mission to the United Nations, 799 United Nations Plaza, New York.

The film was introduced by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Tony Kushner.

Global Student Videoconference: "Forever Free: Celebrating Emancipation"

Tuesday, 19 March 2013, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm, Conference Room 4, North Lawn Building, United Nations, New York.

The United Nations Department of Public Information, in collaboration with UNESCO ASPnet programme and an advisory group, organized a global video conference for students from primary and secondary educational institutions in five countries – Denmark, France, Senegal, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Kingdom and the United States.

NGO Briefing: "Forever Free: Celebrating Emancipation"

Monday, 18 March 2013, 10:15 am – 12.15 pm, Conference Room 4, North Lawn Building, United Nations, New York.


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