“The foundation for the consensus achieved today lies in the presence of the Parties sitting around the table here at UNESCO and showing goodwill”
It was again by consensus that the Executive Board of UNESCO adopted decisions * on the Middle East this morning in the framework of the 205th plenary meeting. In the past year, all twelve decisions on the Middle East have been agreed upon after negotiation between the parties, facilitated by the UNESCO Secretariat.
UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, said: "I would like to commend the spirit of dialogue and the sense of responsibility that led to this result. A trend towards consensus is now emerging. It is based on the presence of all parties around the table at UNESCO and, of course, on their goodwill. These factors have come together in recent months and have enabled the Secretariat to play to the full its role as mediator.
“I wish to thank those who have worked to achieve this, especially the representatives of the Palestinian, Israeli and Jordanian delegations, and all members of the Executive Board who supported this agreement, as well as the European Union.
“More broadly, this result should encourage all Member States to work together, in a spirit of unity, even on the most difficult objectives. The desire to reach consensus is in the very DNA of UNESCO. I hope that it will continue to guide our work every day, in all of the governing bodies of the Organization.
“This outcome reminds us of the relevance of multilateralism and of our Organization, which was specifically created to foster international dialogue and cooperation. It reminds us of the need to sit around the table here at UNESCO and show goodwill. These are the foundations of the consensus reached again today. It is my heartfelt wish to see the trend observed over the past year sustained. The Secretariat stands ready to continue playing its part.”
* The decision adopted in the Commission will be submitted for final approval to the plenary session of the Executive Board next week.
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