Joined UNESCO: 07/10/1992

Head of State and/or Government

President of Georgia: H.E. Mr Giorgi Margvelashvili
Prime Minister of Georgia: Mr Giorgi Kvirikashvili

Permanent Delegation to UNESCO

H. E. Mrs Ecaterine Siradze-Delaunay
Ambassador Extraordinary and plenipotentiary, Permanent Delegate (19/07/2013)

Permanent Delegation of Georgia to UNESCO
Maison de l'UNESCO Bureau M4.41 1, rue Miollis 75732 PARIS Cedex 15

National Commission for UNESCO

President: Mr Mikheil Janelidze*

Vice-President: Ms Khatuna ToTladze

Secretary-General: Ms Ketevan Kandelaki

Georgian National Commission for UNESCO
Ministry of Foreign Affairs 4, Chitadze Street 0118 Tbilisi Georgia
+995 322 945000 (ext. 1912)
+995 322945001
unesco(a); k.kandelaki(a) (SG)
Web site

Read more National Commission for UNESCO

Representation in the Executive Board

The 1991 amendment modified Article V of the Constitution, regarding the status of members of the Board. From the 27th session of the General Conference (1993), the Executive Board consists of Member States rather than of persons (26 C/Resolution 19.3).
Title Name Years Sessions

Participation in subsidiary organs

Other intergovernmental organs

Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission

Addresses delivered in the general policy debate by the Head of Delegation at the General Conference

37 session of the General Conference

Her Excellency, Ms Maia Panjikidze, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia

Speech delivered during the General Policy Debate of the 37th session of the General Conference - revised and corrected version of the verbatim records of plenary meetings

36 session of the General Conference

H.E. Mr Nikoloz Rurua, Minister of Culture and Monument Protection

Speech delivered during the General Policy Debate of the 36th session of the General Conference and posted as received

35 session of the General Conference

H.E. Mr Nikoloz Rurua, Minister of Culture, Heritage and Sports

“Georgia expresses support for the reforms UNESCO has already carried out under the leadership of the Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura, aimed at serving the global community with maximum competence, transparency and effectiveness. On behalf of my country I’d like to express congratulations to Ms Irina Bokova (…)”.
“Current financial and economic crisis poses new challenges for UNESCO, but at the same time gives us the opportunity to more precisely prioritize the Organization's programmes and activities in order to effectively address the issues related to poverty reduction, sustainable development, dialogue between civilizations. We express our support for priorities of the 2010-2011 culture programme, namely for safeguarding and preventing tangible and intangible cultural heritage and promoting diversity of cultural expressions and the dialogue of culture.”
“(…) Georgia ratified two UNESCO conventions, namely Convention on the Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions and Convention on Safeguarding of Intangible Heritage. These international normative instruments provide solid basis for promotion of cultural diversity and safeguarding intangible cultural heritage worldwide (…).”
“We envisage attaining of quality education for all as a central factor for promoting sustainable development, democracy and dialogue among nations and express our commitment to UNESCO Education Programme.”
“Such significant dates as the 20th anniversary of democratic changes in Central and Eastern Europe and the 60th anniversary of Universal Declaration of Human Rights, celebrated last year, remind us once again about the need to foster multilateral efforts in order to ensure better protection of press freedom and freedom of speech. (…) we deem it essential to enhance the Organization's monitoring role in human rights, press freedom and the freedom of speech issues.”
“(…) There are still places on the European continent, where human rights activists and journalists are murdered and kidnapped, where fear and intimidation prevails over fundamental human rights and freedoms, where state authorities fail to dully investigate and prosecute perpetrators. I believe that there is a need to enhance UNESCO relevance in conflict and post-conflict situations, to better ensure protection of human rights, especially the right of people to education in their mother tongue and preservation of cultural heritage.”
“(...) A number of monuments in and around Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, Georgia were heavily damaged during Russian-Georgian war. A precise survey of the damage has not been done so far, as neither Georgian, nor international experts have the opportunity to access the area and assess the situation on the ground. (...) We have numerously called upon UNESCO expertise and assistance to conduct inventory and assessment of the unique cultural heritage objects. ”
“(...) Two years ago, the head of Georgian delegation pointed from this very platform, about the promotion of principles and values of peace and tolerance among young people in Tskhinvali Region, who received the opportunity to be the part of UNESCO ASPnet project. Today I should inform you those two schools in which in which have had the privilege to be engaged in UNESCO Associated schools network do not exist any more. (...) I hope that, we, as a community of responsible nations, will not tolerate such facts and will work together to promote peace, tolerance, democracy and respect for human rights.”

34 session of the General Conference

H. E. Mr Gela Bezhuashvili, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“We greatly appreciate the Director-General’s determined commitment to reform UNESCO, to make it more results-oriented, decentralized and more active in fostering international cooperation that enhances the Organization’s global relevance.”
Georgia is a country that stands on the path to sustainable democratic transformation and therefore fully appreciates UNESCO’s efforts in the fields of education, science, culture, communication, and information. Georgia supports the Medium-Term Strategy for 2008-2013 and the strategic orientation of UNESCO, with a special emphasis on peace education.
“UNESCO has an important role to play in the sciences and we particularly urge a focus on developing potential in fundamental and applied research, innovative technologies, and supporting market-oriented studies, with the purpose of transforming research into concrete outputs.”
As a country undergoing sweeping change to transform itself into an enduring democracy, Georgia attaches particular importance to reforms in education and science.
“We would like to see a strong emphasis on areas such as promoting cultural exchange, linking culture and education, and to providing an integrated approach to the preservation of cultural and natural heritage.”
Georgia has recently presented a ratification bill of the Convention for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage to the Georgian Parliament. The country will strive to improve the implementation of the World Heritage Convention and to contribute to the work of the World Heritage Committee. Furthermore, Georgia would like to stress out the issue of intentional destruction of cultural heritage in the context of armed conflicts.
We recognize the effectiveness of UNESCO’s framework for cooperation in multi-ethnic and multicultural regions, like the Caucasus. We realize the necessity of promoting respect for cultural diversity and enhancing intercultural dialogue, with the aim of contributing to sustainable development.”
The Associated Schools Project network has grown very strong and popular in Georgia over the past 15 years. More and more schools join this noble network to help to promote dialogue and peace education.
The situation in South Ossetia has taken a turn for the better. Since the beginning of the territorial conflict in Abkhazia, this region has been deprived of access to adequate health care and a proper education, but after the Rose Revolution the new Government has worked to provide a truly dignified life to all of its citizens.
“Education is also of prime importance for confidence-building and social cohesion and rehabilitation in the conflict zone, and in this connection it is regrettable that the separatist and secessionist de-facto authorities have been trying hard to stall our efforts in this direction.”
“A free democratic world should not tolerate such behaviour. In this regard, let me stress the need to enhance UNESCO’s role in conflict and post-conflict areas. Special attention must be paid to the educational needs of children, refugees, and IDPs affected by violent separatism, to the need to better protect and preserve the cultural heritage in these areas.”

Celebration of anniversaries

150th anniversary of the birth of Marjory Scott Wardrop (1869-1909) (Georgia, with the support of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland)

Marjory Scott Wardrop translated a number of poetic and prose pieces of Georgian literature of the late 19th century into English and published numerous ethnographic records, travelogues, and studies of various aspects of the Georgian history, in particular of women's history. Thus, she was a model for women writers and translators, sharing the values of Georgian culture, advancing the women's role in cultural creativity and society as a whole.
The association of UNESCO with the celebration of this anniversary will contribute to the promotion of UNESCO Priority Gender Equality related to the promotion of gender equality in cultural life and notably, through creative expressions. (ODG/GE)
Furthermore, this proposal is in line with the Action plan of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), highlighting the importance of women in a culture of peace and intercultural dialogue. (SHS)

100th anniversary of the Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University (1918) (Georgia, with the support of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan)

Established in 1918, Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University is the first national university in Georgia and in the South Caucasus region. For decades, it has been shaping a diverse student body from the former Soviet Republics and championing women's equal participation in higher education. The University is a key contributor to the region's socio-economic development. Its 100th anniversary is aligned with Education's Strategic Objective 1 (38 C/5) - Supporting Member States to develop education systems to foster high quality and inclusive lifelong learning for all. (ED)
Since its establishment, the University has been promoting the ideals of equality, justice and progress and the advancement of women's equal participation in higher education, both as students and teaching staff. The celebration of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Tbilisi State University will contribute to the promotion of UNESCO Priority Gender Equality related to the promotion of gender equality in and through education and in particular, higher education. (ODG/GE)

  • 200th anniversary of the birth of Nikoloz Baratashvili, poet (1817-1845) (with the support of Azerbaijan) (2017)

  • Prince Nikoloz Baratashvili was born in Tiflis (Tbilisi), Georgia’s capital. Baratashvili died of malaria in Ganja, unmourned and unpublished, at the age of 27. Baratashvili’s influence was long delayed, but as the next generation of Georgian literati rediscovered his lyrics, he was posthumously published, between 1861 and 1876, and idolized. Baratashvili’s re-interment from Ganja to Tbilisi in 1893 turned into a national celebration. Since 1938, his remains have lain in the Mtatsminda Pantheon in Tbilisi.
    Nikoloz Baratashvili was one of the first Georgians to introduce “Europeanism” into Georgian literature.
    Baratashvili’s poetry became well-known abroad first of all after B. Pasternak’s translations of his works together with Georgian famous poet Tizian Tabidze. These translations recognized as one of the best works in Pasternak’s poetry.
    Nikoloz Baratashvili’s poems are deeply connected with William Wordsworth’s, Alfonse de Lamartine’s, Samuel Coleridge’s and Leopard’s Poetry, so that according to European Literary critics Baratashvili’s name is linked with denying of Asian (Persian) influence on Georgian Poetry and formation of Europeanism in Georgian literature.
    Despite his early death and a tiny literary heritage of fewer than 40 short lyrics, one extended poem, and a few private letters, Baratashvili is considered to be the high point of Georgian Romanticism.

    200th anniversary of German settlements in the South Caucasus Region (Migration of the Schwab Germans to Azerbaijan and Georgia) (Azerbaijan and Georgia, with the support of Germany) (2016)

    Beyond the celebration of German settlers in Azerbaijan and Georgia, this anniversary outlines a relevant aspect of the encounter among peoples from different cultural and religious backgrounds and the interaction that emerged, that will be celebrated with commemoration events in Azerbaijan, Georgia and in Germany. In the context of globalized and increasingly diverse societies with growing challenges to peaceful coexistence, this celebration carries a strong message of openness to the Other, of tolerance and respect of diversity and difference. It will particularly contribute to promoting intercultural and interreligious dialogue for better mutual understanding and peace, echoing in this regard the objectives of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), for which UNESCO is the lead United Nations agency.

  • 100th anniversary of the death of Akaki Tsereteli, poet and writer (1840-1915) (2015)

  • This proposal requests UNESCO to be associated with the 100th anniversary of the death of Akaki Tsereteli, an iconic figure in Georgian literature who played a key role in modernizing and developing Georgian literary language. Tsereteli also helped to set up the Georgian Dramatic Society and contributed to the development of education and journalism in his country.

    150th anniversary of the birth of Ekvtime Takaishvili, historian and archaeologist (1863-1953) (2013)

    Ekvtime Takaishvili (1863-1953) was a Georgian historian, archaeologist and public benefactor. In 1887 he graduated from Saint Petersburg University. From 1887 to 1917, he lectured on the history of Georgia at various prestigious schools in Tbilisi, including the Tbilisi Gymnasium for Nobility. During these years, he was actively involved in extensive scholarly activities and chaired, from 1907 to 1921, the Society of History and Ethnography of Georgia.

    300th anniversary of the printed edition of the epic poem The Knight in the Panther’s Skin (1712) (2012)

    The Georgian medieval epic poem The Knight in the Panther’s Skin is the first secular book printed in a Georgian typography as well as the first publication of the Georgian poet Shota Rustaveli. As such it is an outstanding example of documentary heritage that is of importance not only to Georgia but to the rest of the world.

    150th anniversary of the birth of Niko Pirosmani, painter (1862-1918) (2012)

    Niko Pirosmani, also known as Niko Pirosmanashvili (1862-1918) was a self-taught Georgian painter. Pirosmani, a major artist who excelled in naïve art, painted mainly scenes of Georgian daily life (banquets, scenes of rural life) and portraits of mythological and political scenes. The world-renowned artist is famous in his country for having produced numerous signs for dukans (Tbilisi inns) in exchange for board and lodging.

    150th anniversary of the birth of Vazha Pshavela, writer (1861-1915) (2011)

    Vazha Pshavela (the pseudonym of Luka Razikashvili, 1861-1915) was a Georgian thinker, poet and writer. Vazha Pshavela’s poetry represents the summit of nineteenth-century Georgian realism.
    He was born in the small Pshavian village of Chargali. He graduated from teachers’ seminary and studied law at Saint Petersburg University. Vazha Pshavela wrote most of his verses, poems and stories in the vicinity of his native village. His works are mainly devoted to human relationships towards the material world. The national epic works of Georgian poetry in the nineteenth century and the revival of poetic epos are also connected with his name. Heroism, tragedy and humanity define the epic creativity of Vazha Pshavela. His poems and narrative stories are widely translated into a number of languages.

    100th anniversary of the birth of Vakhtang Chabukiani, ballet dancer, choreographer and teacher (1910-1992) (2010)

    Vakhtang Chabukiani – an outstanding ballet dancer, choreographer and ballet teacher of XX century, was granted outstanding gifts and physic. He possessed rich palette of expressive means. His Classical manner of dancing, virtuous technique and vigorousness created absolutely new male dancing style in the classical ballet.
    Chabukiani was the partner to the world’s famous ballet dancers: Natalia Dudinskaya, Tatiana Vecheslova, Galina Ulanova and Maya Plesetkaya. In 1934 he toured the United States of America with Tatiana Vecheslova.
    V. Chabukiani started his choreographic career when he was 16. Later, he established Georgian ballet troupe and managed it for 30 years. He taught extensively in Georgia and abroad and raised new generation of ballet dancers. In 2007, the ballet “Laurensia”steged by Vakhtang Chabukiani, was restored and included in the repertoire of Georgian ballet troupe.
    Photo legend: Laurencia – Vera Tsignadze, Frondoso – Vakhtang Chabukiani.

    1000th anniversary of the beginning of the construction of Svetitskhoveli Cathedral (2010)

    Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Mtskheta, the ancient capital of Georgia, is an outstanding example of medieval architecture in the Near East region. The current cathedral was built in the eleventh century by the Georgian architect Arsukisdze, though the site itself is even older dating back to IV-V centuries. The site is related to a number of legends that reflects the early Christian traditions and the adoption of Christianity by Georgia (I-IV cc). It is also considered as the symbol of Georgian centuries-old history. Svetitskhoveli Cathedral is the one of the largest historic church buildings preserved in the country. It is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site along with other historical monuments of Mtskheta.

    1500th anniversary of the construction of the Jvari Church in Mtskheta (2007)

    The City-Museum Reserve of Mtskheta was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1994 for its outstanding universal value. The historic churches of Mtskheta, former capital of Georgia, are outstanding examples of medieval religious architecture in the Caucasus. They show the high artistic and cultural level attained by this ancient kingdom. Following the joint UNESCO-ICOMOS mission to Georgia in November 2003, the state of conservation of the property was examined by the twenty-eighth (2004) and by the twenty-ninth (July 2005) sessions of the World Heritage Committee. The proposed activities to celebrate the 1500th Anniversary of Jvari Church will help raise awareness of the importance of such heritage in the country. This will serve as a basis for future effort in safeguarding the World Heritage properties.

    900th anniversary of the construction of the Gelati Monastery architectural complex and cultural centre (2006)

    Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery were inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1994 for their outstanding universal value. The construction of Bagrati Cathedral, named after Bagrat III, the first king of united Georgia, started at the end of the tenth century and was completed in the early years of the eleventh century. Although partly destroyed by the Ottomans in 1691, its ruins still lie in the centre of Kutaisi. The Gelati Monastery, whose main buildings were erected between the twelfth and seventeenth centuries, is a wellpreserved complex, with wonderful mosaics and wall paintings. The cathedral and monastery represent the flowering of medieval architecture in Georgia. The proposed activities to celebrate the 900th anniversary of Gelati Monastery will help raise awareness of the importance of such heritage in the country. This will serve as a basis for future effort in safeguarding the World Heritage property.

  • 2,000th anniversary of the spread of Christianity in Georgia (2004)

  • In the first century A.D., preached by Andrew the Apostle, Christianity began to spread into Georgia. Later on, missionaries came from Cyprus, Syria, Armenia, Greece, Parthia, Ponto. Their missions on the territory of Georgia, which in the historical sources is named as Skvithia, are inscribed not only in the ancient Georgian sources, but in Greek and Latin sources as well. Adopted as a State
    religion in 330 AD, under the influence of Saint Nino, Christianity brought Georgia into close cultural relations with Byzantium – one of the most advanced civilizations of that time and its spread promoted the development and flourishing of culture in Georgia.
    This anniversary, in addition to the celebration of Christianity as formative factor of Georgian identity, will contribute to a better knowledge of Georgia’s rich cultural heritage and thereby to UNESCO’s objectives for dialogue among cultures and civilizations.

  • 1000th anniversary of the founding of Bagrat Cathedral (2003)

  • Centenary of the birth of the Georgian scholar Arnold Chikobava (October 1998).

  • Hundred and thirtieth anniversary of the birth of the Georgian painter Nico Pirosmanishvili (September/October 1996).

    A self-taught painter, nicknamed, the ‘dauber’, he developed with time into an
    original artist possessing a highly personal pictural style, using pure colours with
    great taste and skill.
    True to his origins, he drew on his talent to immortalize in his works the customs
    and social climate of his country, but he also had a spontaneous and innocent
    vision of the world, depicting unknown countries with a subtle sense of reality,
    which won him world renown.