The objective of the meeting, organized by the Section of National Commissions, was to inform the participants of latest developments and discuss future activities. Under chairmanship of Mr Walter Lerouge, President of the Flemish (Belgium) National Commission, brief presentations were made in that respect by the representatives of National Commissions and the UNESCO Secretariat.
The participants took note with satisfaction that the unique role and added value of National Commissions were repeatedly highlighted in the deliberation of the current session of the Executive Board. It was suggested that proactive measures and concrete action should be taken by National Commissions to keep this momentum high.
Message to the Director-General, Mrs Irina BOKOVA, from the Coordinating Group of National Commissions for UNESCO
The upcoming regional consultations of the Director-General with National Commissions on the Draft 36 C/5 should represent a good opportunity for National Commissions to prove their relevance. During the consultations, National Commissions should collectively reflect on the new changes taking place at UNESCO and formulate their responses and recommendations in this respect.
It was stressed that National Commissions should be widely consulted as part of the current External Evaluation of UNESCO and that the representatives of the Evaluation Team could be present at the regional consultations.
The participants expressed their condolences, through a minute of silence, to the Polish National Commission on the tragic death of President Lech Kaczynski of Poland in a plane accident.
The participants were presented with the main outcomes of recent regional and interregional meetings, such as:
- The Task Force of the Euro-Arab Dialogue of National Commissions (UNESCO HQs, 27-28 January 2010) More
- The Brainstorming Session of the Coordinating Group of National Commissions (UNESCO HQs, 29 January 2010) More
- The Meeting of the European National Commissions (Lugano, Switzerland, 3-5 March 2010) More
- The Meeting of the European and Arab National Commissions on the Comparative Studies of School Textbooks (Strasbourg, France, 30-31 March 2010).
National Commissions representatives with ADG/ERC
The participants reiterated their appreciation of the Director-General’s position towards National Commissions. They requested that the Secretariat continue to provide support in their capacity-building and to involve National Commissions in decentralization and the UN Delivering as One reform processes.
After the meeting, the representatives of National Commissions were received by Mr Ahmed Sayyad, Assistant Director-General for External Relations and Cooperation (ADG/ERC), on behalf of the Director-General. He underscored the key role of National Commissions in assuring UNESCO’s visibility in Member States and in coordinating multiple partnerships. More
Mr Sayyad also thanked the donor countries, such as Bulgaria, Germany, Spain and the Republic of Korea for their generous support to promote North-South-South cooperation among National Commissions.
Report of the meeting