Building peace in the minds of men and women

Visit of the First Lady of the People's Republic of China to UNESCO on the occasion of the UNESCO Prize for Girls' and Women's Education

26 March 2019

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© UNESCO/Christelle Alix

Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, held talks with Professor Peng Liyuan, UNESCO Special Envoy for the Advancement of Girls’ and Women’s Education at the Organization’s Headquarters on 26 March.

This visit by Professor Peng Liyuan, First Lady of the People’s Republic of China, to an event on girls’ and women's education at UNESCO Headquarters is a further expression of her support for the Organization’s action in favour of this priority cause.  Winners of the four editions of the UNESCO Prize for Girls’ and Women’s Education gathered at the event and bore testimony of the significant local impact of the Prize on the empowerment of girls and women through education.

Speaking at the event, Ms Azoulay declared: “UNESCO greatly appreciates Peng Liyuan’s personal commitment to the cause of girls’ and women’s education, as well as our long-standing partnership with China to ensure that access to quality education for girls and boys becomes a reality. This is a priority issue for our Organization, a matter of dignity but also an extraordinary accelerator for the development of our societies.”

“China is a strategic partner of UNESCO, particularly committed to multilateralism,” the Director-General also said. “It supports the core of UNESCO’s missions, including the education of girls and women on the one hand, and Africa through major education projects on the other.”

The visit of President Xi Jinping and the First Lady to UNESCO Headquarters in March 2014 marked a milestone in China’s relations with UNESCO.  During Audrey Azoulay’s visit to China last July, President Xi highlighted his country’s commitment to a new era of cooperation with the Organization.

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Read the interview of  Professor Peng Liyuan: The equality of opportunity is fundamental in the UNESCO Courier