IDEA Youth Forum kicks off in Leon


The 18th edition of the IDEA Youth Forum, IDEA’s flagship event, is held in the beautiful city of Leon, Mexico from July 2 - 15. The Forum is organised by IDEA Mexico and Universidad Iberoamericana in Leon.

"This is a very special forum. This is the first Forum that is organized outside of Europe. We are incredibly lucky and privileged that first time we are doing this outside of Europe we are doing this in a beautiful country of Mexico" said Marcin Zaleski, the Executive Director of IDEA London and the Forum Director for this year.
There are more than 200 hundred participants coming from 45 countries that will take part in this year's Karl Popper Debate Championship, the Mixed Team Debate Tournament and the various educational tracks and social activities.
The Forum has attracted a lot of local media interest, as well as the support of the City of Leon and the State of Guanajuato. "We get richer as a nation, as individuals, we get richer as conspirators, that´s why we have invited you all to generate a conspiracy movement, 200 years ago we conspire with weapons, now we conspire with ideas" said Hector Lopez Santillana, the Governor of the state of Guanajuato, while addressing the participants in today's opening ceremony. 
"Today we embrace and share our values. These are passion, democratic spirit, courage and dignity. During these days, youth from different countries will discuss and exercise tolerance. You will discuss the basic elements of the future of our society, a society in which freedom and peace will be the starting point for developing participation, justice, the economy and opportunities for all" said Gerardo Valenzuela, Director of Universidad Iberoamericana Leon.
This edition of IDEA Youth Forum will be the first international experience for debaters from countries that have only recently started developing debate communities or which are in the process of doing so. Regardless of their debate experience, all participants will share their thoughts and ideas during the debates and educational tracks in the Forum's diverse setting.
The theme for the Karl Popper Debating Championship 2012 is Securing Liberty. There are two prepared motions (topics) for the competition:
“State-sanctioned torture is justifiable in exceptional circumstances.”
“Guantanamo Bay prison should be closed down immediately”.
The International Debate Education Association or IDEA is a global network with over a decade of experience of teaching debate to young people.
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