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WCC/UN High Level Conference: Refugee Crisis in Europe

WCC/UN High Level Conference: Refugee Crisis in Europe

Refugees arriving on the Greek island of Lesbos. Photo: Paul Jeffrey/WCC

14 January 2016

Some 80 leaders of governments, UN agencies, faith-related as well as non-religious civil society organizations from countries affected by the current refugee crisis in Europe, Middle East, and Africa will meet at a conference hosted by the World Council of Churches (WCC) in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Fund for Population (UNFPA), and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR)  to discern how they can proactively influence and shape coordinated collective practical responses.

The opening keynote will be delivered by the German Minister of the Interior, Dr Thomas de Maizière, with responses by  UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner for Protection Volker Türk, Greek Ambassador to UN H.E. Mr Alexandros Alexandris, and Archbishop Dr Antje Jackelén of the Church of Sweden.

The agenda also features contributions by the leaders of the WCC, UNFPA, UNICEF Central and Eastern Europe Region, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Lutheran World Federation, the Middle East Council of Churches and its Ecumenical Relief Services, the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, the Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe, the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, the Evangelical Church in Germany and the German Protestant aid agency Bread for the World, among others.

When: 18-19 January 2016

Press Conference 19 January 13:00-13:45 CET

Where: Ecumenical Centre, 150 route de Ferney, 1211 Geneva, Switzerland

Hosts: The World Council of Churches in partnership with UNICEF, UNFPA and UNHCR

Link to live stream:

More information on WCC work on migration (including documents from conference):

Photos of the event will be made available free of charge at the same day. Video recordings will be available on the WCC YouTube channel the following day.

Media participation

Press and media are cordially invited to attend the conference. To do so, interested media must register for accreditation on Friday 15 January, by 13.30 p.m. CET at the latest. Please note that even journalists with a Geneva UN press pass are required to register for this event using the accreditation form below:

Accreditation form (MS Word)

Conference programme (700 KB, pdf, last updated: 17 January, 20:00 CET)

For more information, please contact WCC director of communication Marianne Ejdersten:, +41.79.507.6363