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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

OGP High Level meet in NY this week

Ten heads of government/heads of state are to attend the meeting, the latest to sign up President Hollande of France. No official word on Prime Minister Abbott's response to an invitation from President Yudhoyono but as I've heard from New York that a delegation from Australia is expected to attend as observers, maybe that says it all. 

Follow the meeting on Twitter at #OGPatUN and @opengovpart

It will be livestreamed starting at 3.45pm 24 September New York time, by my calculation 5.45am 25 September AEST.

Yesterday President Obama spoke at the Clinton Global Initiative on the importance of civil society:

Citizens remind us why civil society is so essential. When people are free to speak their minds and hold their leaders accountable, governments are more responsive and more effective. When entrepreneurs are free to create and develop new ideas, then economies are more innovative, and attract more trade and investment, and ultimately become more prosperous. When communities, including minorities, are free to live and pray and love as they choose; when nations uphold the rights of all their people -- including, perhaps especially, women and girls -- then those countries are more likely to thrive.  If you want strong, successful countries, you need strong, vibrant civil societies.  When citizens are free to organize and work together across borders to make our communities healthier, our environment cleaner, and our world safer, that's when real change comes.
A citizen is a powerful force for change. That is why more and more governments are doing what they can to silence them -- from Russia to China to Venezuela and more. "This growing crackdown on civil society is a campaign to undermine the very idea of democracy. And what's needed is an even stronger campaign to defend democracy," the President said.  
I'd been told Foreign Minister Bishop intended to be there. 

A statement on Australia's  support for civil society?

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