Visa problems keep Africans out of climate talks

Posted by Laura Grant on December 12, 2008
Posted in Green News

Delegates from some of the African countries likely to be worst hit by climate change have been unable to attend the United Nations talks in Poznan, Poland, because of problems obtaining visas, Afrique en Ligne reports.

There are only three Polish Embassies in the whole of sub-Saharan Africa – in South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria – which has made it very difficult for people wanting to attend the talks to obtain visas.

Saleemul Huq, head of climate change at the Institute for Environment and Development Studies in London, was quoted as saying that “the absence of media, NGO and government representatives from the countries most vulnerable to climate change has meant that their concerns have been slipping from the agenda”.

He added: “We have lost count of the number of people from such nations that have been unable to attend the full two-week conference because of the excessive time taken to process their visa applications. If this happens again at next year’s meeting in Copenhagen, it will be a serious impediment to getting a deal that is fair and equitable.”

Read the full article here

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