INTRODUCTION: The French government opened a conference in Paris on Wednesday (21 January) aimed at discussing the ways women could aid development in African countries.
LV Arc de Triomphe at top of Champs Elysees, Paris
SV Monique Pelletier arriving at international conference centre (2 shots)
SV Delegates enter conference room
SV Delegates including those from Mali and Madasgascar seated at conference table
SV Monique Pelletier greeting delegates as they arrive in conference room
SV Delegates from Guinea, Mrs. Mariana Sow, Secretary General of Guinea, "L'union des Femmes", and Mrs. Francisca Pereira of Guinea-Bissau
SV PAN Delegates seated at conference table (2 shots)
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The French government opened a conference in Paris on Wednesday (21 January) aimed at discussing the ways women could aid development in African countries. The French are anxious to identify African priorities in this area and help where they can.
SYNOPSIS: The three day conference was officially presided over by France's minister for Women and the Family, Mrs. Monique Pelletier. In her opening address she identified the objectives of the conference as "establishing the outlines of a policy for cooperation which may effectively secure the technical, cultural and social contributions of women to development". Among the 20 countries who sent delegates, ten were represented at ministerial level. They included Benin, Cameroon, Comoros, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Guinea, Upper Volta, Rwanda, Senegal and Togo. Most of the delegates came from French speaking countries.
During her speech Mrs. Pelletier invited the delegates to exchange their experiences in order to achieve the conference's objectives. The Guinea delegation included Mrs. Mariana Sow, the Secretary-General of the Guinea Union of Women. She was flanked by Francisca Pereira, from neighbouring Guinea-Bissau. Their countries' differences over ownership of territorial waters, thought to be rich in oil, were submerged for the conference. The French Cooperation minister, Robert Galley hopes the talks will remove some of the constraints "enslaving" African women, and hindering development.