U.S. Embassy Montevideo - Archives



U.S. Embassy Officer speaks at UNESCO/Uruguayan Foreign Ministry Event

July 13, 2004


U.S. 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 speech


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