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UN International Week of Persons with Disabilities events kick off in Cairo

Ahram Online, Tuesday 4 Dec 2018
File Photo: President Abdel-Fattah at the Arab forum for special needs surrounded by participants (Photo: Ahram)
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The United Nations Week of Persons in Disabilities kicked off in Cairo on Monday with events marking the International Volunteers, Migration and Persons in Disabilities Day.

Events will be held on Tuesday and Wednesday at Future University in New Cairo, organised by the United Nations Office in Cairo in coordination with the Arab Council for Social Development, with the participation of Egypt's Minister of Immigration and Egyptian Expatriates Affairs Nabila Makram and a number of ambassadors of countries representing large number of refugees in Africa and the Middle East.

The week’s events are being held in partnership between the United Nations Volunteers Programme, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Information Center (UNIC) .

During the events, the permanent representative of Egypt at the UN will deliver a speech on volunteering, migration and persons with disabilities’ challenges in Egypt and the world under the title "Let us not exclude anyone." 

According to Ashraf Marie, general supervisor of the National Council for Disability, persons with disabilities make up 11 percent of Egypt's 104 million population. He noted that the integration of persons with disabilities into society proves they represent an effective element and a key partner in the Egyptian community and national economy. 

According to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, around 15 per cent of the world’s population, or an estimated 1 billion people, live with disabilities, making them the world’s largest minority.

Last year, Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi designated 2018 as the Year of People with Disabilities. 

Article 81 of the Egyptian constitution stipulates the state shall guarantee the health, economic, social, cultural, entertainment, sporting and education rights of dwarves and people with disabilities, and that the state shall provide work opportunities for disabled individuals.

It also guarantees the rights of children who have disabilities, and ensures their rehabilitation and incorporation into society.

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