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International conference launches revolutionary South Asia autism network
Date:7/25/2011

DHAKA, BANGLADESH (July 26, 2011) Autism Speaks, the world's largest autism science and advocacy organization, in collaboration with the Government of Bangladesh, the Centre for Neurodevelopment & Autism in Children, and the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University hosted the first regional conference titled "Autism Spectrum Disorders and Developmental Disabilities in Bangladesh and South East Asia." The World Health Organization also participated and provided technical support. The two-day Conference brought together regional politicians, international organizations, and academics to discuss the current state of autism research and advocacy within the region as well as opportunities for future collaboration. The Conference served to launch the South Asia Autism Network; a multi-national network of governments, organizations, and private citizens committed to combating autism throughout South Asia.

The conference began on July 25, with opening statements by the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina Wazed. Sheikh Hasina urged all to join the regional initiatives in facing autism, "I request you all to join me in friendship in taking up this tremendous challenge facing us today. Let us begin the process of working in cooperation and collaboration with one another, so that as a region we can develop scientifically sound practices, which are socially applicable and economically feasible." H.E. Sonia Gandhi, President of the Indian National Congress; H.E. Shiranthi Rajapaksa, First Lady of Sri Lanka; Hon. Lyonpo Zangley Dukpa, Minister of Health for Bhutan; Hon. Dr. Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih, Minister of Health for Indonesia; among others spoke at the commencement of the conference.

Suzanne and Bob Wright, co-founders of Autism Speaks addressed the conference participants through a video message, "We are committed to supporting the global autism community and know that rapid and sustainable progress is possible when key stakeholders
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Contact: Matthew Van Wagenen
matthewv@brownlloydjames.com
01-121-248-67070
Autism Speaks
Source:Eurekalert  

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