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"A Noble Desire," a 30-minute documentary about the 1999 Benin Reconciliation Conference, will be shown today from 6:30-9:30 p.m. in the Hampton/Newport News Room, Webb University Center. A dialogue with people who worked on the film, attended the conference or are active in National Conference on Community and Justice (NCCJ) will be held following the presentation.

The presentation is sponsored by Old Dominion University's student chapter of NCCJ, along with Virginia Wesleyan College and WHRO.

According to William Hart, faculty adviser for Old Dominion's NCCJ, Benin, a country in western Africa, played an important role in the slave trade. "In the past, leaders of Benin helped bring millions of Africans into slavery," he said. "The current leader of Benin, President Mathieu Kerekou, did a brave thing. His mission was simple: Seek forgiveness from the millions of displaced Africans. He led his entire country in this simple yet difficult venture. President Kerekou along with the Beninese people took responsibility for their country's past and he invited other nations to do the same. 'A Noble Desire' shows this story of forgiveness."

For more information visit http://www.whro.org/benin/apology.shtml or call 683-3834 or e-mail wbhart@odu.edu.

This article was posted on: January 22, 2001

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