The Director-General appeals for renewed dialogue in the Old City of Jerusalem

The Director-General appeals for renewed dialogue in the Old City of Jerusalem
  • © UNESCO/A. Wheeler

Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, today declared that he shared the concern of Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, about the recent tensions in the Old City of Jerusalem.

In a statement dated 8 October, Robert Serry, United Nations Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, reported that the Secretary-General of the United Nations was “very concerned at the recent clashes in Jerusalem”.

Mr Matsuura, who on Monday 12 October received Sylvie Fadlallah, President of the Arab Group at UNESCO and Ambassador of Lebanon to UNESCO, as well as a group of Ambassadors from the region, expressed his hope to see a rapid return to calm in the Old City.

On this occasion, the Director-General stated, as he had done in his reply to the general policy debate on Monday 12 October before the 35th session of the General Conference, that renewing dialogue was the first step on the road to peace and development. “In the framework of its competences”, he repeated, ‘the unremitting objective of UNESCO remains working towards the protection of the integrity and authenticity of this site of outstanding universal value, which is registered on the World Heritage List and on the List of World Heritage in Danger, in close cooperation with all the parties concerned”.

  • Author(s):Office of the Spokesperson
  • Source:Flash Info N° 192-2009
  • 13-10-2009
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