added a research item
The Arab Diaspora Conference maintained the spirit and hope of the people of the Middle East for democracy, dignity and human rights. It aimed to empower individuals from the Arab Speaking Diaspora who were willingly or forcibly exiled because they exercised their rights to freedom of expression, as well as those who remain in their lands and do not have the space to exercise them. This gathering built on and solidified work done at an initial closed workshop in 2018 at the University of Ottawa. The 2020 gathering was public and sought to actively include, engage with and inform policymakers, and to advocate for human rights and democracy to members of the Arab diaspora and the broader Canadian public. This was accomplished through public speaking and writing.