Refugee Week Scotland 2008 Launch




Embargoed until 0001 Monday June 16


Refugee Week Scotland ‘08

June 16-22

Different Pasts, Shared Future


Refugee Week Scotland 2008 launches tomorrow (Monday 16)

at the Tron Theatre, Glasgow.

Press Call 530pm

Event 6-8pm


WE in Scotland love to celebrate. Whether it’s Hogmanay or St Andrew’s Day, Burns Night or Friday night, we all love a good reason to get together and share in a bit of fun.


And that’s what this week, Refugee Week Scotland, is all about.


From film festivals to football tournaments, comedy nights to carnivals, exhibitions, plays, parties and much, much more, Refugee Week Scotland is an opportunity for us all, no matter what our backgrounds, to celebrate what we have in common and understand and respect our differences.


With loads to choose from and Glasgow’s Tron Theatre as the festival hub, you’re never far away from a Refugee Week Scotland event.


John Wilkes, Chief Executive, Scottish Refugee Council, said:


“For many years, refugees have been seeking sanctuary in Scotland, enriching our communities, contributing to our sports and culture, society and economy. Refugee Week Scotland is an acknowledgement of that.


But Refugee Week is not just for refugees. It is for everyone in Scotland, an opportunity for us all  to celebrate our different pasts and look forward to our shared future.”


Stewart Maxwell, Minister for Communities and Sport, said:

Please insert quote here




Notes to Editors:


§  What: Launch of Refugee Week Scotland with Stewart Maxwell MSP, Minister for Communities and Sport, the Paragon Kaleidophone Ensemble and Y-Dance (Scottish Youth Dance)


When? Monday June 16. Press call 530-6pm.

Stewart Maxwell, Minister for Communities and Sport, John Wilkes, Chief Executive of Scottish Refugee Council and Mohsen Saad, a Somalian Refugee and director of Umoja Events Scotland, will be available for interview.


Picture opportunities with participating groups available.


Event 6-8pm. Media welcome at both press call and event.


Where? Tron Theatre, 63 Trongate, Glasgow, G1 5HB


§  Refugee Week Scotland is co-ordinated by Scottish Refugee Council and is part of a UK-wide festival to celebrate diversity and raise awareness of refugee issues. To download a pdf of the Scottish programme, visit


§  Scottish Refugee Council is an independent charity that provides advice and assistance to refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland. We also campaign for fair treatment of refugees and asylum seekers and to raise awareness of refugee issues. For more information visit


§  There are around 10,000 refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland. The majority of new refugees to Scotland are coming from Iraq, Iran and Eritrea, fleeing war, torture or persecution.


§  There are 14 million refugees worldwide (UN Refugee Agency figure). The UK hosts only 2 percent of them. The majority of the world’s refugees are taken care of by the poorest countries, such as Iran and Pakistan. There are currently 2 million Iraqi refugees in Syria.


§  Refugees to the UK include 16 knights and peers of the realm, 18 Nobel prize winners, and 71-fellows of the Royal Society. Fish and Chips, the Mini and Marks & Spencer were all introduced to the UK by refugees.


§  For more information or interviews contact Aideen McLaughlin on 0141 223 7927/07734 030 763