The Atlanta Sister City Commission will seek to host the annual convention of its umbrella organization, Sister City International (SCI), in either 2001 or 2002, Mayor Bill Campbell has announced.

      The convention would bring some 1,600 visitors to Atlanta from Sister City organizations around the country and overseas. SCI represents the Sister City programs of 1,158 U.S. cities and their 2,082 partners in 123 countries worldwide.

      Representatives of the Atlanta commission will make a presentation at the upcoming convention to be held in Miami in July and will be assisted by the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau (ACVB).

      Sister City affiliations between the U.S. and other nations began shortly after World War II and developed into a national initiative when President Dwight D. Eisenhower proposed the people-to-people program at a White House conference in 1956.

      Atlanta currently has Sister City relations which foster educational, cultural and economic ties with 16 cities around the world including Ancient Olympia, Greece; Brussels, Belgium; Bucharest, Romania; Cotonou, Benin; Lagos, Nigeria; Montego Bay, Jamaica; Newcastle Upon Tyne, England;

      Port-of-Spain, Trinidad; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Salcedo, Dominican Republic; Salzburg, Austria; Taegu, Korea; Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China; Tbilisi, Georgia and Toulouse, France.

      Additional Sister City relationships are being explored with Nuremberg, Germany, and Limbe/Kumba in Cameroon.

      For more information, call Georgianne Thomas, the chair of the commission, at (404) 755-0502.