UNESCO EXECUTIVE BOARD TO
EXAMINE NEW MEASURES FOR THE PROTECTION OF CULTURAL DIVERSITY
Paris, October 1 (No.2001-100)-
A draft Declaration on Cultural Diversity - the first international instrument
designed to safeguard cultural diversity in the context of globalization - will
be among the subjects to be examined by UNESCO’s Executive Board during its
forthcoming session, October 2 to 12.
Other major issues to be
examined by the Executive Board include more effective ways of punishing “crimes
against the common heritage of humanity” with the aim of reinforcing heritage
protection from wanton damage or destruction.
These two texts will be
submitted to the 31st session of the General Conference of UNESCO’s 188 Member
States, which takes place October 15 to November 3.
The Executive Board will also
review UNESCO’s bioethics programme and its priorities in this field. While
reviewing the recommendations of UNESCO’s International Bioethics Committee
and of the Intergovernmental Bioethics Committee on a wide range of ethical
issues raised by the advances in genetic research, the Board will consider
drafting an international instrument to prevent abuse in the use of genetic
data. Ethical issues raised by genetic research will be discussed by some 30
science ministers from around the world at a roundtable, “Bioethics:
International Implications” which will be held during the General Conference,
on October 22 and 23.
In the course of the session,
UNESCO Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura will report to the Executive Board on
the follow-up to the World Conference on Science (Budapest, 1999) and the World
Education Forum (Dakar, 2000). The follow-up to Dakar will also be the subject
of a high level meeting to be held during the General Conference, on October 29
and 30. It will bring together heads of state, ministers and players from
developing countries, the donor community and multilateral aid agencies.
The Executive Board meets twice
a year to review the implementation of decisions about UNESCO’s programme and
budget adopted by the General Conference. It is also in charge of preparing the
General Conference. Currently chaired by Sonia Mendieta de Badaroux from
Honduras, the Board’s members are elected by the General Conference. Half the
members are replaced every two years and serve for a term of four years.
More information on the work of
the Executive Board, including all the relevant documents, can be found on the