University College Cork (UCC),are confident that  US President Barack Obama will  deliver the inaugural Frederick Douglas lecture on human rights at the college to kick off a human rights lecture series at the southern Irish university. They say the U.S. Embassy in Dublin is supportive of their initiative.

The  Lord Mayor  of Cork Cllr. Dara Murphy, and Bloody Sunday author Don Mullan, along with the college are  jointly spearheading the  initiative to attract the President to Cork for the lecture.

The lecture series, to be on the subject of human rights, is to be called the Frederick Douglas initiative, named after one of the US’s best known anti-slavery campaigners and one of Obama’s political heroes.

A statute of the hero is also set to be unveiled at the college. Douglas spent a year in Ireland during the famine.

And the Lord Mayor has said that the city is almost ready to issue the White House with an official invitation which the organisers are said to be quietly confident the President will accept.

The Lord Mayor said: "Given the fact the Douglass is one of Obama’s primary historical heroes, I and people in Washington believe that this is a project that will interest President Obama. We have a lot of work to do but there are people in Washington willing to help us."