» Visit of Cuban President Raul Castro confirms excellent cooperation between Cuba and UNESCO
02.02.2016 -

Visit of Cuban President Raul Castro confirms excellent cooperation between Cuba and UNESCO

Paris, 2 February – Today the President of the Republic of Cuba, Raul Castro, visited UNESCO’s headquarters In Paris where he met with Director-General Irina Bokova. During the bilateral meeting they emphasized positive momentum in the relations between Cuba and UNESCO that in 2017 will mark 70 years since their establishment.

”I wish to congratulate the President of Cuba for the ongoing process of transformation and opening," said Director-General. “This process is essential in the context of global transformation, at a time when all the countries have started implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.” UNESCO will keep supporting Cuba every step of the way.

”UNESCO can count on Cuba’s collaboration to foster education, science and culture that contribute towards the development of mankind, freedom and well-being,” said Raul Castro.

Havana hosts the UNESCO Regional Office for Culture in Latin America and the Caribbean. Opened in 1950, it is the Organization’s oldest field office in the region.

“The horizons of our cooperation are broad. They include playing the leading role in promoting the power of culture for sustainable development," said the Director-General citing, among other examples, the recent designation in Havana of the Mexican doctor Alfonso Herrera Franyutti as the laureate of the International UNESCO / José Martí Prize, and Japanese researcher Yoshihiro Kawaoka as the winner for the UNESCO / Carlos Finlay Prize.

"Cuba is willing to cooperate with all the countries in the world," said Raul Castro mentioning, as an example, Cuba’s role in the Colombian peace process, for which Cuba and Norway are the guarantor countries. The President also recalled the solidarity of Cuban doctors at the onset of the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone, Guinea Conakry and Liberia, as well as the presence of thousands of Cuban doctors in Venezuela, Brazil and a number of African countries.

Ms Bokova also confirmed the presence of the UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education, Qian Tang, at the next International Congress of Higher Education “University 2016," to be held from February 15th to 19th in the Cuban capital.

The Director-General praised the dynamism of the Cuban education system, describing the results it achieved as "very positive" having met the targets set by the international community in Dakar in 2000.

During his visit President Castro was accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, Vice Minister Rogelio Sierra Diaz, Ambassador, Permanent Delegate of Cuba to UNESCO, Dulce Buergo Rodríguez, the Chief of Staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Barbara Montalvo Álvarez, and the Director of the European Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Elio Rodríguez Perdomo.

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