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President of Mongolia launches the Incheon Strategy to move towards a disability-inclusive society

H.E. Mr. Elbegdorj Tsakhiagiin, the President of Mongolia, pledged the nation’s commitment to the implementation of the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Right Real” for Persons with Disabilities in Ulaanbaatar on 26 March 2014. During the national event held at the Government Building, over 800 participants, representing Government, organizations of persons with disabilities, NGOs and the private sector in Mongolia, attended this high-level launch of the Incheon Strategy.

The event was  organized by the Government of Mongolia, through the Ministry of Population Development and Social Protection and the Ministry of Health, in cooperation with ESCAP, WHO, the World Bank, the Asia-Pacific Development Center on Disability (APCD) and the Mongolian Federation of Disabled People’s Organizations.

The event demonstrated highest-level political commitment to implementing the Incheon Strategy in Mongolia.   In addition to the President of Mongolia whose message was delivered by his advisor, pledges were made by the Prime Minister, the Parliament Speaker, the Minister of Population Development and Social Protection and the Minister of Health, all reaffirming the nation’s commitment to the Incheon Strategy.

Mongolia is at the forefront of legal and administrative processes concerning the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and the Incheon Strategy. By ratifying, in 2009, the CRPD and its Optional Protocol, it is among the few Governments in Asia and the Pacific that ratified both documents and began putting them into practice. The Incheon Strategy has been already translated into Mongolian and made available in different formats accessible by persons with visual and hearing disabilities, i.e. Braille, easy-to-understand and DVD versions.

In conjunction with the launch of the Incheon Strategy, a national consultative committee, headed by the Minister of Population Development and Social Welfare, was established to work out an Action Plan for implementing the Strategy.

The event provided many excellent opportunities to heighten awareness of the situation and rights of persons with disabilities in Mongolian society, and to forge partnerships among stakeholders including Government, civil society organizations, the private sector and international agencies.