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More than 900 students from 50 schools will debate issues ripped from today's headlines, including international security, immigration standards, the crisis in Darfur and women's rights, at the Old Dominion University Model United Nations Society's annual High School Conference Feb. 14-17 at the Sheraton Waterside Hotel in downtown Norfolk.

Hamid Abdeljaber, former chief of the Middle East radio unit, United Nations Department of Public Information, will deliver the keynote address at 9 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 15.

Also attending the conference will be Jean-Bernard Gazarian, senior fellow and coordinator of the training program for permanent missions at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, and Sarah Archer, humanitarian assistance subject matter expert at Battle Command Training Program in Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

The students are split into committees and councils modeled after the U.N., including the Economic and Social Committee, Future Security Council, Historical Security Council, Security Council and Non-Governmental Organization Forum.

Topics to be discussed in committee include: disarmament and international security, furthering women's rights in the world, post-conflict peace building, economic growth and sustainable development, Iran and the proliferation of nuclear weapons, and conflict in the Horn of Africa: Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia.

The purpose of the ODU Model United Nations Society is to promote further knowledge of the U.N., international issues and the global community.

This article was posted on: February 9, 2007

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