M. Matsuura meets with H. E. Dr. Lam Akol, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sudan

M. Matsuura meets with H. E. Dr. Lam Akol, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sudan
  • © UNESCO/N.Burke

Mr Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of UNESCO, met on Tuesday, 14 June at Headquarters in Paris with Mr Lam Akol, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sudan, to discuss the strengthening of cooperation between Sudan and UNESCO.

Mr Matsuura reiterated UNESCO’s strong desire to support Sudan during the important process of reconstruction and development, made possible by the Peace Agreement signed in Nairobi, Kenya on 9 January 2005 between the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) and the Government of Sudan. He highlighted the need for UNESCO to intervene in its various fields of competence, with a special focus on education, in particular literacy, basic education, teacher training, and culture. Scientific cooperation, particularly in the field of water management, and media development are other keys areas of assistance by UNESCO to Sudan.

Referring to his decision to insure a field presence in the form of an antenna in Khartoum and an outpost in Juba, which has been effective as of March 2006, Mr Matsuura announced to the Minister his intent to submit a proposal to the next session of the Executive Board, to establish a permanent National Office located in Khartoum with an antenna in Juba. “This institutionalized and reinforced presence”, he said, “will give a more solid ground to our joint efforts aiming at building a sustainable peace and allow for a better coordination with other UN agencies in Sudan”. “There are some key areas where UNESCO can make a real difference, and Sudan is clearly a case in the matter, where we can stress the interrelationship of education and culture, and to develop an interdisciplinary holistic approach to the production and access to knowledge”, he added.

Mr Akol expressed his thanks to UNESCO for its timely efforts and underlined the urgent need for strengthened cooperation with UNESCO in the fields of education, especially technical education. He also highlighted the importance of better safeguarding and promoting Sudan’s cultural diversity and heritage as a tool for dialogue between communities and expressed the hope that UNESCO’s presence in the country would help achieve the goals of the reconstruction and reconciliation agenda set by the Consolidated Peace Agreement (CPA).

  • Auteur(s):Office of the Spokeswoman
  • Source:Flash info n°091-2006
  • 15-06-2006
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