PRETORIA, 17 May - Sixteen United Nations Information Centres (UNICs) in sub-Saharan Africa, marking World Information Society Day, today launched new websites in an effort to bring the work of the United Nations closer to its local constituencies around the continent.
The Information Centres in sub-Saharan Africa provide communications services to a total of 34 countries and are part of a network of United Nations information offices in over 60 capitals around the world. They are crucial players in promoting United Nations priority issues at the national level.
The websites were designed as a collaborative project by the information technology teams of the Information Centres Service of the Department of Public Information at United Nations Headquarters and the United Nations Regional Information Centre in Brussels, Belgium. UNIC Pretoria will be responsible for the ongoing maintenance and updating of the sites, in partnership with the individual UNICs.
In addition to news generated by United Nations Headquarters, the United Nations country teams and the UNICs themselves, the websites in Africa also host translations into more than 20 national languages of key United Nations documents, as well as a variety of links to United Nations system websites, programs and key events.
The new websites are part of the expansion of web-based information on the United Nations to as wide an audience as possible, particularly in developing countries. The entire United Nations system, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated in his message marking World Information Society Day, is committed to supporting the linkage between information and communications technology, and development.
Encouraging all stakeholders "to do their part to connect young people and to create a truly open, inclusive and development-oriented information society", the Secretary-General called for the production of suitable technologies, applications and services to facilitate wide access to information and communications technology.
To view the new UNIC websites, please visit:
Dar es Salaam
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