Embassy Public Affairs Officer Brian Penn spoke at July
13 seminar celebrating Afro-Uruguayan heritage and the “The
International Year Commemorating the Abolition of Slavery.”
The seminar was sponsored by United Nations Educational,
Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the Uruguayan
Foreign Ministry, the Center for Peace and Integration (CECUPI),
and the U.S. Embassy.
Among the other speakers at the event were
Uruguayan Congressman Edgardo Ortuno, Dr. Jorge Meyer from
the Uruguayan Foreign Ministry, the director of CECUPI,
Ms. Beatriz Santos, and the head of the UNESCO office in
Uruguay, Manuel Bernales. Mr. Penn’s speech focused
on the contributions Africans have made to both American
and Uruguayan culture and the similarities that unite African
American and Afro-Uruguayan culture. Mr. Penn also mentioned
that though this year commemorates the abolition of slavery,
the recently released State Department Trafficking in Persons
report demonstrates that slavery and trafficking in persons
still exists and must be combated.
Following the seminar American saxophonist
and former Fulbright scholar Matt Van Hoose performed jazz,
tango and candombe, backed by a group of Uruguayan musicians.
Link to Penn's