Refugee Week Scotland launches 2011 programme at Magnum show

What:             Refugee Week Scotland 2011 programme launch
Where:           Trongate 103, Glasgow, G1 5HD
When:            Thursday, 2nd June at 6pm 

Refugee Week Scotland launches its biggest programme ever with a new exhibition from Magnum Photos at 6pm this Thursday, 2nd June, at Glasgow multi-arts venue Trongate 103.

The Refugee Week Scotland programme will be launched at the opening of ‘Sixty Years, Six Lives’, an exhibition of photographs by Ian Berry (Magnum Photos) to mark the 60th anniversary of the lifesaving UN Refugee Convention. The exhibition has been commissioned by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) for Refugee Week 2011, which runs across the UK from June 20-26. 

‘Sixty Years, Six Lives’ is a remarkable photographic exhibition featuring refugees from around the world who came to the UK seeking sanctuary in each of the decades since 1951, when the Refugee Convention was created. Their photographs tell stories of personal struggle, courage and perseverance. 

Speakers will be present from Magnum Photos, UNHCR and Scottish Refugee Council. Carlos Arredondo (Chile) and Shetrup Akong (Tibet), who feature in the exhibition and who are based in Scotland, will also be present. 

Roland Schilling, UNHCR representative to the UK, said: 'In a world still encountering conflict and human rights violations, the 1951 Refugee Convention is one of few effective tools that can protect, restore dignity and provide a new home for millions of people. A pledge made by states to save the lives of many, the Convention is as essential today as it was 60 years ago.' 

For interviews and rights-free images please contact Clare Harris, Media and Communications Officer, on 0141 223 7927 or 07850 930418, or email 

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For more information on Refugee Week Scotland go to 


Notes to editors 

  1. Refugee Week Scotland is coordinated by Scottish Refugee Council and runs from June 20-26 at venues across Scotland. For more details see 
  2. ‘Sixty Years, Six Lives’ runs at Trongate 103 until July 1, as part of the Refugee Week Scotland 2011 programme. The exhibition is one of over 100 events that make up the programme for Refugee Week Scotland. 
  3. The theme of this year’s Refugee Week Scotland is 60 Years of Contribution and Courage, marking the 60th anniversary of the lifesaving UN Refugee Convention.  
  4. Photographer Ian Berry is known worldwide for his arresting, evocative photos – and as a member of the celebrated cooperative, Magnum Photos. Magnum was formed following the Second World War by pioneers of photo-journalism including Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson. Today its photographers continue to chronicle the world and its people, with a powerful, individual vision.  To mark the 60th anniversary of the UN Refugee Convention the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has partnered with Ian Berry and Magnum to produce this exciting exhibition. Berry has photographed refugees around the UK, including Scotland, who came here seeking safety since the 1950s. 
  5. The purpose of Refugee Week is to deliver positive educational messages that counter fear, ignorance and negative stereotypes of refugees, through arts, cultural and educational events that celebrate the contribution of refugees to the UK, and promote understanding about the reasons why people seek sanctuary. 
  6. Refugee Week was first held in 1998, and was created in response to the increasingly negative perceptions of refugees and asylum seekers held by the general public in Britain. It remains the only UK-wide event that promotes the importance of sanctuary and the benefits it can bring to both refugees and host communities.



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