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7, Place de Fontenoy
75352 PARIS 07 SP, France


Nurturing the democratic debate.  
13-04-2004 5:25 pm The Executive Board of UNESCO, chaired by Ambassador Hans-Heinrich Wrede (Germany), will meet in Paris from April 14 to 29 for its 169th session.

The Executive Board comprises 58 of the 190 Member States. The Board, which convenes twice a year, is responsible for the execution of the programme adopted by UNESCO’s General Conference. The Secretariat, under the leadership of the Director-General, Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, is charged with its implementation.

“With the return of the United States to UNESCO last October, and a substantial increase in budget,” Ambassador Wrede stated, “the organization is now in an even better position to fulfill its central tasks: worldwide education and a genuine dialogue among cultures”.

Major themes to be debated in this session are Education for All, cultural diversity and bioethics. The Executive Board will assess progress made in Africa and elsewhere relating to Education for All, which remains one of the top priorities.

In a world of increasing globalization, preserving cultural diversity and safeguarding world cultural heritage are paramount. Accordingly, the Board will examine the results of experts’ meetings in drawing up a convention on cultural diversity. The Board will also discuss the preparation of a “Declaration on Universal Norms in Bioethics”.

The agenda also includes discussion on the follow-up to the World Summit on the Information Society (Geneva 2003). Several issues concerning post-conflict cultural and educational reconstruction, as in Afghanistan and Iraq, will be considered as well.

Journalists who wish to cover the Executive Board must be registered
with the Press Relations Service, tel. 01 45 68 17 48 – fax 01 45 68 56 52

For more information on the Executive Board and the relevant documents, go to: http://www.unesco.org/exboard/index.shtml

Source Media advisory No 2004 - 22


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