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UAE expresses support for UNESCO

posted on 04/10/2003: 602 views

The UAE has reiterated its support for the UNESCO's effort to expand the spectrum of dialogue among cultures and civilisations and to enhance multilateralism and respect for cultural diversity in line with international agreements, which all the people of the world pledged to uphold in the interest of sustainable development. In his address to the 32nd session of UNESCO's general congress last Thursday, Dr. Ali Abdul Aziz Al Sharhan, who seized the opportunity to welcome the US back to the UNESCO, said that the US presence in the organisation will enhance the role of the international organisation and its legitimacy.

He said that although the beginning of the third century had brought some hope for better future co-operation and understanding among peoples of the world towards a life that is free of racial discrimination, voices that call for clashes between civilisations continue to echo high... This, he said, had opened the door wide open for all forms of extremism, adding that due to contradictory initiatives and short-sighted policies, the world had become very tense, with raging violence and destruction, which made it highly necessary for international intellectual and ideological organisations like the UNESCO to step in and play its role effectively to stop the intellectual pollution, which tend to set the world adrift from its noble peaceful objectives.

He mentioned some facts which include the fact that the world civilisation was a mixture of the interaction of various human civilisations and a result of human relations throughout history. "Every civilisation and culture, from East and West, has contributed to the human ideology and in forming this collection of human values and principles,” he said, adding "The contributions of Arab and Islam to this human civilisation are well known.” Another fact, he said, was that the terrorism phenomenon was an international one, which is not confined to a particular ideology, race, religion or nation, adding that it was not right to identify it to a particular people or religion... He said the Arab and Islamic world were the most at the receiving end of terrorism.

Another fact, he added, was that global peace was integral and does not comply to double standards. "No people should achieve peace at the expense of others. Just as there can never be peace under occupation. It is therefore unrealistic to ask the victim to ensure the security and peace of his executioner,” Al Sharhan said. "We therefore reiterate the need to bring an end to the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian lands and to allow the Palestinian people achieve their rights for self determination, to establish their independent state and to allow their refugees to return to their homes,” he added. He renewed the UAE's request to grant Palestine a full membership status in UNESCO. (The Emirates News Agency, WAM)


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