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For Immediate Release
Martin Burack
(703) 648-9888

Enhancing Africa's Internet Infrastructure, Content and Expertise is focus of The Internet Society's African Symposium at INET 97, World's Premier Internet Conference

Washington, D.C. -- May 19, 1997-- Enhancing Africa's Internet infrastructure, content and expertise will be the focus of the Internet Society's in-depth day-long African Networking Symposium to be held on Tuesday, June 24, 1997 at the Putra World Trade Center in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Pragmatic, clearly-focused and comprehensive, the Symposium will present cutting-edge information on current and emerging technical and policy issues confronting African educators, technologists and policy-makers. The theme of the Symposium is "Beyond Basic Connectivity in Africa" and presentations will be made on the results of several international connectivity projects and on pressing Internet-related issues facing African nations today.

The African Networking Symposium keynote speech will be delivered by the Honorable Cmdr. P. M. G. Griffiths, Minister of Communication for the Government of Ghana. Symposium papers will address the status of various African Internet-related activities. The Symposium will also include African country/regional reports and distinct panel sessions on: the Leland Initiative, a USAID program with 20 African nations; the Sustainable Development Network Program, a United Nations initiative to develop global Internet connectivity and expertise; the Orstom Initiatives, a French program to upgrade network connectivity of select African universities, and others.

The Symposium will be held prior to INET 97, the Internet Society's seventh annual conference, which opens following the Symposium on June 24, 1997. The African Symposium's low cost, which includes program, lunch and materials is only $105.

"The Internet Society is pleased to offer this vitally important symposium addressing a range of highly pertinent technology and policy issues affecting Internet development in Africa" said Donald M. Heath, President and CEO of the Internet Society. "INET 97's African Networking Symposium papers and concomitant discussions between participants and from the dais will assess the progress made to improve connectivity and to exchange practical solutions regarding the further deployment of Internet applications in Africa."

The African Networking Symposium grew out of the activities of a group of African participants at the 1996 Developing Countries Workshop in Montreal, an activity of the Society. At that time, about 250 participants were being trained in depth in networking technology, use and management, in a one week workshop preceding the conference. African participants convened and decided to share their experiences informally. Interest in the topic was sufficiently high that the Internet Society has decided to formalize it as one of the events surrounding the annual conference.

The Internet Society is the international organization for global coordination and cooperation of the Internet and is the sponsor of INET 97, premier global Internet conference. INET 97 will include presentations of more than 100 papers and case histories, plenary sessions and panels on key Internet issues, and a wide range of seminars. Thousands of information technology professionals, business executives, educators and government officials from around the world are expected to attend.

To register for the African Symposium and/or the INET 97 Conference, complete the INET 97 Registration Form located on the ISOC Web-site:

The Internet Society (ISOC) is the leading organization for the technical, commercial and policy development of the Internet. ISOC is a non-profit, non-governmental group that provides a forum for diverse interests and businesses to manage the many issues and concerns which the new applications of the Internet are generating. Membership includes more than 100 key Internet-oriented organizations and about 7,000 individuals from 150 countries. Additional INET 97 conference information can be obtained by contacting the Internet Society at 703-648-9888;; e-mail, or by writing to 12020 Sunrise Valley Drive, Reston, VA., USA. 20191-3429.

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