Cultural Diversity Of Iraq Reaffirmed In UNESCO-Backed Round Table
New York, Dec 10 2009 1:10PM The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has helped to
organize a round table to reaffirm Iraq’s diverse cultural heritage, as the country seeks to rebuild after years of
conflict and economic hardship.
The event, held in Basra in southern Iraq, aimed to identify ways to translate the country’s rich cultural diversity to
promote development, dialogue, peace and social cohesion.
Held on 7 December, it was moderated by Mufid Jazaeri, a parliamentary member who chairs the Parliamentary Commission
for Culture and Media.
At the gathering, UNESCO underscored the link between a healthy acceptance of the country’s diverse ethnic, cultural and
religious background and the democratic process.
The agency believes that cultures are not independent, not monolithic, and its 2001 Universal Declaration on Cultural
Diversity proclaims that cultural diversity “widens the range of options open to everyone.”
Mohamed Djelid, UNESCO Representative to Iraq, told participants that “celebrating this diversity, which is a reflection
of the ethnic diversity in Iraqi society, is a source of strength.”
The day-long round table wrapped up with those taking part signing the Basra Declaration, comprising recommendations
aimed at advocating cultural diversity in Iraq.