07.04.2012 - ODG

Irina Bokova strengthens cooperation with Algeria

© UNESCO/Vesselina IvanovaUNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova during her visit to a green school in Algiers, April 2012

From 8 to 11 April, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova was on an official visit to the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria.

During this visit, the Director-General met several government officials, including the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mourad Medelci, the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Rachid Harraoubia, the Minister of Education Boubekeur Benbouzid and the Minister of Culture Khalida Toumi. These meetings were opportunities to exchange views on ways to strengthen cooperation between Algeria and UNESCO and to back the reform process launched by the President of the Republic.

The Director-General visited several World Heritage Sites -- in particular, Tipasa, an ancient Punic trading-post conquered by Rome and a crossroad of civilizations of the Mediterranean basin at the beginning of our era. This site comprises a unique group of Phoenician, Roman, palaeochristian and Byzantine ruins, alongside indigenous monuments, such as the Kbor er Roumia, the great royal mausoleum of Mauritania. Irina Bokova will also visit the constructions of M’Zab Valley, with its simple and functional architecture that is perfectly adapted to its environment and that remains a source of inspiration for today’s urban planners. These visits were an opportunity to highlight the potential of cultural tourism for the economic and social development in Algeria, and the interest of strengthening national capacities in this area.

The Director-General also visited a "green" school in Algiers and gave a speech at the University of Algiers 1, the country’s first university, on the theme culture of peace and the role of civil society in this rapidly changing region.

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