Teenage peace maker’s insight into war zone

Wednesday 8 May 2002

A 16-year old peace maker, who has fought against landmines in Colombia since he was 10 years old, is to give a public lecture at the University of St Andrews next week (Wednesday 15 May 2002).

Gerson Andrés Flórez Pérez will talk about the impact of war on children as a guest of World Voices Norway, of which Gert Danielsen, a Norwegian student at the University, is Director. The organisation promotes the voices of young people determined to shape their own future. The One World Society at the University will co-host the talk.

When he was just 10 years old, Gerson, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, presented a peace proposal to the President of Colombia, one of the most conflict- ridden countries in the world.

Gert, a Spanish/International Relations student who will act as interpreter for Gerson said, “Recently, 40 children were bombed by armed groups in Chocó in Colombia and millions more are daily victims of domestic violence, poverty and forced recruitment into the guerrillas and paramilitary groups. Gerson is one of many youngsters who dare speaking up for these children.”

The talk, in Spanish with English interpretation, will take place in School III, St Salvator’s Quadrangle, North Street, St Andrews at 7.30pm on Wednesday 15 May 2002 (50 pence entrance fee, donations welcome).

Gerson will give similar lectures at the London School of Economics and the Universities of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Oxford. Further information about Gerson’s work and World Voices Norway is available at http://www.worldvoices.no/eng/proje ct/colombia/.

NOTE TO EDITORS – For more information, please call Gert Danielsen direct on 01334 473021.

Issued by Beattie Media on behalf of the University of St Andrews For more information please contact Claire Grainger on 01334 462530, 07730 415 015 or email [email protected] Ref:gert- talk/standrews/chg/9may2002

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