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DIRECTOR-GENERAL OF UNESCO

UNESCO signs an agreement with the Sultanate of Oman strengthening cooperation in the field of natural sciences

On 22 October 2009, the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the Ambassador of the Sultanate of Oman to France, Mr Ahmed Bin Nasser Al Mahrizi, on behalf of the Minister of Transports and Communications of the Sultanate of Oman.

The agreement aims to reinforce the cooperation between UNESCO and the Sultanate in the field of natural sciences, and in particular by establishing a National Multi-hazard Early Warning System.

This agreement follows an expert mission sent to the Sultanate of Oman by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission in September 2008 to provide guidance on the development and implementation of Oman’s tsunami warning and mitigation system for the Indian Ocean.

The Director-General expressed his great satisfaction with this joint endeavour, by which the Sultanate will provide funding to allow UNESCO to assist the Directorate General of meteorology and Air Navigation to build the Oman National Early Warning System.

The Director-General recalled that UNESCO would provide expertise on training of staff, network of coastal sea level gauges, tsunameters and sea level measurements, network of seismic sensors, communication systems for warning dissemination in real time, software and modelling, and educational and public awareness material. UNESCO’s action will be conducted through technical missions, workshops and training activities and a project coordinator will be based in Muscat, Oman.

The Director-General expressed the wish that this agreement would open the way to a stronger bilateral cooperation between UNESCO and Oman and a possible assistance to other Arab and African countries.

The Ambassador of Oman to France thanked the Director-General and recalled that the project was in line with the Kobe Action Plan by reinforcing anticipation and warning. He also emphasised that, in view of the acceleration of natural disasters, UNESCO had an important role to play in helping to mitigate the risks.

  • Author(s):Office of the Spokesperson
  • Source:Flash Info N° 215-2009
  • 27-10-2009
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