Official opening of the intergovernmental SESAME (Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East) Centre
Official opening of the intergovernmental SESAME (Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East) Centre by H.M. King Abdullah II of Jordan in the presence of the Director-General of UNESCO, the Director-General of the IAEA, the Director General of CERN, the EC Commissioner of Research, Science and Innovation, and Ministers from a number of the Members and Observers of SESAME.
SESAME was created under the auspices of UNESCO (164 EX/Decision 3.3.3). It is an intergovernmental synchrotron light source in Allan, Jordan. Its Members are Cyprus, Egypt, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Israel, Jordan, Pakistan, Palestinian Authority and Turkey. The Observer countries are Brazil, Canada, China (People’s Republic of), the European Union, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Portugal, Russian Federation, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
Its goals are
(i) to foster scientific and technological excellence in the Middle East and neighbouring countries (and prevent or reverse the brain drain) by enabling world-class scientific research in subjects ranging from cultural heritage, archaeology, biology and medical sciences through basic properties of materials science, physics, chemistry, and life sciences, and
(ii) to build scientific and cultural bridges between diverse societies, and contribute to a culture of peace through international cooperation in science.
UNESCO played a crucial role, in particular in the early days of the project, and this role is still substantial insofar as promoting the activity of SESAME and its mission for fostering solidarity and cooperation in the region of the Middle East and neighbouring countries and encouraging its Member States to join SESAME.