Irina Bokova receives the Prize 'Doha 2010 Arab Capital of Culture'
During the award ceremony, held at the Embassy of Qatar in Paris on 16 December, the Director-General of UNESCO underscored culture as a vector for peace and dialogue and a force for development.
“Our vision of heritage cannot be restricted to celebrating only the universal value of exceptional sites,” she declared. “Cross-border sites, where several cultures overlap, such as the great works of the Incan roads and the Silk Road – these are physical and symbolic bridges between peoples.”
“Doha carries high the message of a living culture,” continued the Director-General, “a culture that works for development and peace, nourished by the history of other such cities as Baghdad, Damascus and Grenada.”
The Arab Cultural Cities programme was launched in 1995 by UNESCO to celebrate Arab culture, to promote awareness and to encourage international cooperation between countries in this region. After Khartoum, Damascus and Algiers, Doha was in the spotlight this year.
Irina Bokova was awarded the prize as Director-General of UNESCO, the lead agency for the 2010 International Year Rapprochement of Cultures, along with Dominique Baudis, Director of the Institut du Monde Arabe, in recognition of his contribution to mutual understanding between peoples.
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