Director General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Audrey Azoulay, on Tuesday in Paris, emphasized that King Mohammed VI is committed to strengthening cooperation between Morocco and the UN organization in a number of areas, including. preservation of the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity.
“We know how great the cooperation between Morocco and UNESCO is. Your Majesty owes the commitment of the King and the royal family,” confirmed Audrey Azulein in a speech presided over by Princess Lalla Hasnaa at the signing ceremony. Partnership agreement between the Foundation for the Protection of Cultural Heritage in Rabat, UNESCO and the Foundation.
In the framework of this cooperation between the Kingdom and UNESCO, he recalled that the “particularly rich” session of the Intangible Heritage Committee was held in Rabat last November, and he emphasized that this heritage was the subject of an important announcement by His Majesty the King. with the upcoming establishment of a National Center dedicated to intangible heritage.
The Director General also mentioned that the International Conference on Adult Education was held in Morocco a few months ago and also highlighted the fundamental archaeological discoveries made in Morocco: in 2017, the oldest homo sapiens fossil in Djebel Irhud and the ornaments of the Bizmoune cave opened new perspectives on the origin of humanity.
Azoulay did not hesitate to highlight the commitment of Lalla Hasnaa, president of the Muhammad VI Foundation for Environmental Protection, which has been supporting UNESCO since 2016, especially in its activities aimed at the protection of the oceans and the development of environmental awareness. Work provided by the Rabat Foundation for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage, chaired by the Prince.
According to the Director-General of UNESCO, the city of Rabat embodies the spirit of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention: a dialogue between the old and the new, understanding and valuing the heritage of centuries, while being fully modern.
Rabat also shows what World Heritage listing can bring in just ten years in terms of cultural policy dynamism, urban transformation, sustainable tourism development and opportunities for local communities.
“Particularly because of this dynamic – and we had the opportunity to celebrate together the 10th anniversary of Rabat’s inscription on the World Heritage List – Rabat was chosen as both the cultural capital of the world Islam and the first capital of Africa. culture”, welcomed the General Administration of UNESCO.
Welcoming the signing of the first official cooperation agreement between UNESCO and the Foundation, he told the prince: “These successes owe a lot to your personal commitment and the work carried out by the Foundation. started working together.
According to Ms. Azoulay, this agreement opens up new perspectives not only in Rabat, not only in Morocco, but also in Africa in general, which is one of the strategic priorities of UNESCO and “the ambition of the projects implemented by the fund”. , rejoicing in the success of the “I discover our heritage” program, which has already benefited about 4,000 schoolchildren from more than 60 schools in Rabat thanks to the efforts of Lalla Hasnaa and the Foundation, this activity will continue outside Rabat. which covers the whole country and serves only as an example in other African countries.
“Another axis of our common work in Morocco and here again on the continent will be to respond to the need for a new generation of well-trained and specialized professionals – a pressing and particularly crucial need for UNESCO and Morocco. , especially through the fund, we collaborate in serving our priority for Africa,” he said.
It should be recalled that Lalla Hasnaa, the president of the Rabat Foundation for the Protection of Cultural Heritage, presided over the signing of the partnership agreement between the two organizations in the presence of Audrey Azoulay at the UNESCO headquarters on Tuesday.
The agreement, signed by UNESCO’s Assistant Director-General for Culture Ernesto Ottone and the Foundation’s Secretary-General Nouzha Alaoui, will primarily involve a youth education program for World Heritage and UNESCO, as well as activities with Moroccan and African youth. . The Foundation and UNESCO are committed to implementing important actions on the African continent. This joint action will involve the implementation of the World Heritage Convention in Morocco and classified areas in Africa.
The partnership agreement also envisages capacity-building programs for stakeholders managing and protecting heritage in Rabat, Morocco or Africa, and finally participation in various national and international events organized by UNESCO.