NGO representatives meet in Moscow to draft proposals for G8 summit
Representatives of civil and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from many countries have met in Moscow for the international Civil G8 2006 forum to draft proposals for the G8 summit, to be held in St. Petersburg in summer 2006.
Consultations with NGOs are traditionally held during preparations for G8 summits. Their main goal is to learn the opinion of civil societies on priority issues chosen for the G8 by the presiding country. This year they include energy security, education, and infectious diseases.
In order to involve the public in preparations for the Russian summit, the NGOs launched the Civil G8 2006 forum last year. Ella Pamfilova, chair of the human rights and civil society council under the Russian President, was elected the forum’s coordinator.
“Our goal is not to steer public discussions into a channel suiting the authorities, but to create sites for airing opinions on the key issues of the summit’s agenda,” she said opening the meeting today. Pamfilova noted that the initiators of the project “do not aim to reduce the variety of opinions to only one view.”
For two days forum participants, who represent over 300 NGOs from 35 countries, will hold roundtable discussions of the key issues of the G8 2006 agenda, seeking to elaborate common recommendations and proposals for the G8 summit. They will be forwarded to official representatives of the G8 countries for reference during the organization of the summit.
Today the forum participants will meet with the G8 Sherpas, personal representatives of leaders at the G8 Summit.