Remarks by US Mission to UNESCO Charge d’Affaires a.i. Chris Hegadorn on the occasion of the U.S. Independence Day

Thank you everyone for being here tonight. We’re here for a number of things, including my farewell, that of my deputy, Michael, and to welcome two new officers to our mission.  I will introduce [them] in a moment and, since that’s not enough, we’re also celebrating the U.S.’s Independence Day. So to begin the formal ...
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United States Explanation of Position Delivered after adoption by consensus On Items 25/26 – “Occupied Palestine” and Arab Education Institutions

UNESCO 204th Executive Board April 12, 2018 Madame Chairwoman; distinguished colleagues; The U.S. delegation warmly welcomes the progress demonstrated here today and congratulates the parties for taking the steps necessary for a constructive approach to a very difficult and sensitive file. Joined by other delegations concerned about how this issue has consistently damaged UNESCO’s reputation ...
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United States Explanation of Position on Item 204 EX/5, Part I.D, “Follow-up of the Situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine)”

The United States joins members of this Board in restating our unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders.  We once again condemn Russia’s occupation and purported annexation of the Crimean peninsula, and call on Russia to immediately return control of the peninsula to Ukraine. We also recall United Nations ...
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National Statement, United States of America to the 204th Executive Board of UNESCO Delivered by Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Chris Hegadorn

Thank you, Mr. Chairman of the Executive Board, Madam President of the General Conference, Madam Director-General and staff, distinguished representatives and colleagues: It is with a degree of optimism that I address this Executive Board session, my last before departing the U.S. Mission to UNESCO later this year.  With a new leadership team at UNESCO ...
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United States National Statement to the 39th General Conference

United States National Statement 39th General Conference November 4, 2017 Madam President of the General Conference, Madam Director-General, distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen; it is an honor to represent the United States of America at this 39th Session of the UNESCO General Conference. On October 12, the United States made public its decision to withdraw ...
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United States Explanation of Position on item 202 EX/5 Part 1 (L)

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, Three-and-a-half years ago, Russia seized and occupied Crimea. Russia then staged an illegitimate referendum in which residents of Crimea were compelled to vote while heavily armed foreign forces occupied their land. Echoing the joint statement delivered by Sweden at last month’s information session concerning Crimea, the United States joins members of ...
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The United States Withdraws From UNESCO

Press Statement Heather Nauert Department Spokesperson Washington, DC October 12, 2017 On October 12, 2017, the Department of State notified UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova of the U.S. decision to withdraw from the organization and to seek to establish a permanent observer mission to UNESCO. This decision was not taken lightly, and reflects U.S. concerns with ...
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Statement by the United States on items 202 EX/38 and 39

The United States welcomes the agreements among key parties here at UNESCO to postpone consideration of these two items, as we have consistently objected to such one-sided and divisive resolutions. While a postponement itself does not resolve the underlying issues, it will be imperative for all sides and this Executive Board to work in the ...
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United States National Statement to the 202nd session of the Executive Board

United States National Statement 202nd Executive Board Session October 10, 2017 Thank you, Mr. Chairman of the Executive Board, Madam Director-General Bokova, President of the General Conference, fellow Member States representatives. Let me begin by thanking those who shared condolences following the recent horrific shootings in Las Vegas, a grim reminder of why we must ...
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TeachHer Featured at First UNESCO International Symposium on Girl’s Education in STEM

The U.S. Mission to UNESCO showcased the TeachHer public-private partnership at UNESCO’s first international symposium and policy forum on girls’ education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The forum, held in Bangkok, Thailand, examined the social and structural barriers that hinder the education of girls and young women in STEM fields. The TeachHer public-private ...
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Herbie Hancock welcomes U.S. Creative Cities @UNESCO

The United States Mission to UNESCO welcomed representatives from each of the six American UNESCO Creative Cities to Paris on the eve of the 2017 Creative Cities meetings. UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Intercultural Dialogue, and American Jazz icon Herbie Hancock opened the event with a speech highlighting the transformative power of creativity to bring people ...
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2nd TeachHer Regional Training for Africa Launches in Kenya

July 24, 2017 – Over 80 teachers, administrators, and policy makers from 10 African countries have joined the 2nd TeachHer Regional Training for Africa in Nairobi, Kenya this week. The TeachHer Initiative, launched in 2016, is a public-private partnership aimed at training teachers and education leaders to encourage girls to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts ...
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Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee

Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee Krakow, Poland July 7, 2017 Item 41 COM 8B.1:  Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town   Thank you Mr. Chairman, The decision to inscribe Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town on an emergency basis is divisive, confusing, and impossible to justify.  The site is not under ...
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Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee

Statement by the United States Delegation to the Forty-first session of the World Heritage Committee Krakow, Poland July 4, 2017 Item 41 COM 7A:  Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls   As we have emphasized in the past, these politicized and one-sided resolutions are damaging to the credibility of UNESCO, and greatly hinder the ...
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Chargé d’Affaires Hegadorn and Ambassador of Panama to UNESCO briefed the First Lady of Guatemala on TeachHer public-private-partnership

At the request of Guatemala’s Ambassador to UNESCO, on June 9, Chargé d’Affaires Hegadorn, along with Ambassador of Panama to UNESCO Flavio Méndez, and UNESCO Education for Inclusion and Gender Equality Section Chief Justine Sass, briefed the First Lady of Guatemala Patricia de Morales on the TeachHer public-private partnership aimed at encouraging adolescent girls to ...
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Chargé d’Affaires Hegadorn and Swiss Ambassador host a reception in honor of Bertrand Piccard and the Solar Impulse team

  After receiving the Legion d’Honneur from the French President, Bertrand Piccard and the Solar Impulse team were honored at a cocktail reception hosted by Chargé d’Affaires Chris Hegadorn and Ambassador of Switzerland to UNESCO Jean-Frederic Jauslin for their contributions to science, exploration, and education. Chargé Hegadorn highlighted the remarkable achievements made by Bertrand and his ...
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Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 201 EX/31

Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 201 EX/31 Statement as delivered on May 2, 2017 The United States regrets that the Executive Board was again presented with a one-sided resolution on which our position is well-known.  It is our view that going forward, Members should engage in a more constructive manner to ...
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Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 201 EX/30

Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 201 EX/30 Statement as delivered on May 2, 2017   The United States expresses its strong opposition to this agenda item.  While changed somewhat from the draft decision text since the last Executive Board session, these revisions are still insufficient, and the very agenda item itself ...
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U.S. Explanation of Vote on Agenda Item 5, Part I (G) at the PX 201st UNESCO Executive Board

U.S. Explanation of Vote on Agenda Item 5, Part I (G) at the PX 201st UNESCO Executive Board As Delivered Paris, April 28, 2017 Echoing the joint statement delivered by Sweden at last month’s information session concerning Crimea, the United States joins members of this Board in restating our unwavering support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity ...
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United States National Statement to the 201st session of the Executive Board

United States National Statement 201st Executive Board Session April 24, 2017   Thank you, President of the Executive Board, Madam Director-General, and fellow Member State delegations. With an election for a new Director-General and Executive Board Members scheduled for this coming November, this seems an appropriate time to underscore where the United States hopes this ...
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USUNESCO celebrates International Jazz Day at UNESCO

On April 21, the U.S. Mission to UNESCO, along with the Permanent Delegation of Brazil to UNESCO hosted a Jazz night at UNESCO, with the American jazz band ‘Sangoma Everett Trio, featuring Sulaimain Hakim (Saxophone) Bastian Brison (Piano) Thibaud Soulas (Bass) and Brazilian artist Manu Le Prince. More on International Jazz Day: From UNESCO’s website: ...
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Travel story: Discovering the “Cradle of Mankind” in Tanzania

Recently, as part of her temporary assignment at UNESCO, Hannah M. Hamilton, Ph.D, from the U.S. Geological Survey had the opportunity to visit Tanzania and tour Ngorongoro-Lengai, an aspiring UNESCO Global Geopark. UNESCO Global Geoparks are single, unified geographical areas where sites and landscapes of international geological significance are managed with a holistic concept of ...
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IVLP Testimonial: UNESCO Education Sector Programme Specialist Theophania Chavatzia visits the U.S. on an IVLP

” What a unique professional and personal opportunity it was for me to visit the United States, as part of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP)! Over a period of three weeks, I visited five different cities across the U.S., from the East to the West Coast, participated in numerous professional and cultural events, visited ...
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The Motorcity meets the metropole: UNESCO City of Design Detroit takes center stage in France

USUNESCO Chargé d’Affaires Chris Hegadorn attends the Opening of the Design Biennale in Saint Etienne on March 9, 2017, along with a delegation from the City of Detroit headed by the Detroit Creative Corridor (DC3). In December 2015, UNESCO designated the City of Detroit as a Creative City of Design.  Five other U.S Cities have ...
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UNESCO reaffirms its commitment to expand Holocaust Education and to fight Anti-Semitism

On January 26, UNESCO led the UN community’s International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust, reaffirming its commitment to expand Holocaust Education and to fight Anti-Semitism.  A moving nighttime ceremony attended by nearly 500 UNESCO permanent delegation officials, members of the public, and prominent Israeli government representatives culminated a week ...
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Strategic Partnerships to advance the 2030 Agenda

Strategic Partnerships to advance the 2030 Agenda: On January 19, the Permanent Delegation of the United States hosted an event at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris in support of two public-private partnerships: PeaceWorX, Preventing Violent Extremism through Education; and TeachHer, enhancing access to quality STEAM education for girls. Deputy Director-General of UNESCO, Mr. Getachew Engida, opened the event noting: ...
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DCM Hegadorn speaks at an African Union-UNESCO education policy workshop on the Mission’s ‘TeachHer’

On December 14, 2016, Deputy Chief of Mission Christopher Hegadorn spoke at an African Union-UNESCO education policy workshop on the Mission’s ‘TeachHer’ partnership initiative, and plans for expanding its teacher training for STEAM educators in Africa during 2017, with the goal of narrowing the gender gap in STEAM subjects and careers.
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Ambassador Nix-Hines’ Luncheon on TeachHer in Zimbabwe with Higherlife Foundation

Higherlife Foundation recently hosted a luncheon where U.S.Ambassador to UNESCO,  Crystal Nix-Hines, talked about “TeachHer” , a program aimed at encouraging adolescent girls to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Design, and Math (STEAM) careers. TeachHer runs on four pillars which are Activate, Train, Inspire and Sustain. With women in STEAM careers earning 33% more than ...
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United States Mission to UNESCO Announces the launch of TeachHer Central America

TeachHer Central America Begins On Monday, November 14 at the University for Peace in San Jose, Costa Rica, a group of 100 educators from all seven Central American countries and the Dominican Republic came together to attend TeachHer, a one-week regional teacher training course on how to train and inspire adolescent girls to pursue careers ...
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Welcome to USUNESCO’s new website

Yes, we have a brand new website! Have a look around! The new-look website has sections representing broad topics covered by the United States Mission to UNESCO that may be of interest to you. The sections are broken down further into sub-categories to assist you in finding specific information. If you can’t find what you ...
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National Statement of United States Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 200th Executive Board

National Statement of United States Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 200th Executive Board October 10, 2016 Thank you, Mr. Chairman, Madam Director-General Bokova, President of the General Conference, Excellencies. We appreciate the condolences for Hurricane Matthew and extend our profound regrets to the people of Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba. The Director General has ...
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Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 200 EX/26

Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 200 EX/26 Statement as delivered on October 13, 2016 Despite our repeated calls and efforts with other Members on this Board to avoid such one-sided, and damaging resolutions, the Executive Board was once again presented with a near-identical text from earlier sessions. This text – like ...
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Explanation of Vote by the United States on item 200 EX/25

Statement as delivered on October 13, 2016 Before me is a binder containing all the resolutions involving Israel and the Palestinians since 2000. Through 2009, and even as late as 2013, these resolutions were not politicized and were adopted by consensus. But, in recent years, these resolutions have grown increasingly inflammatory and one-sided, to the ...
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Nomination for World Heritage List: Key Works of Modern Architecture by Frank Lloyd Wright

The United States is pleased to announce the nomination of a group of 10 buildings in seven states designed by American architect Frank Lloyd Wright for inclusion on the World Heritage List. The UNESCO World Heritage List recognizes the “outstanding universal value” of the most significant cultural and natural sites on the planet. The nomination, ...
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TeachHer

On June 14, 2016 the U.S. Mission to UNESCO and its partners announce the launch of TeachHer, a public-private partnership aimed at encouraging adolescent girls to pursue Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Design, and Math (STEAM) careers. Improving educational outcomes for women and girls is a powerful force for achieving transformational progress in developing countries, ...
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Dr. Jill Biden’s Remarks Launching the TeachHer STEAM Initiative at UNESCO (June 14, 2016)

The White House Office of the Vice President For Immediate Release June 14, 2016 Remarks of Dr. Jill Biden at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as Prepared for Delivery Paris, France Bonne après midi! Good afternoon. I would like to begin by asking you to join me in continuing to offer ...
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National Statement of United States Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 199th Executive Board

[As delivered] Merci Messieurs Les Présidents, Madame la Directrice Générale, Excellences. C’est le premier conseil exécutif depuis les élections, et nous tenons à féliciter nos collègues et L’Ambassadeur Worbs pour leurs nouveaux mandats. Nous voulons également exprimer notre profonde gratitude envers les Etats Membres pour leur confiance, et pour avoir permis aux Etats-Unis de continuer ...
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Remarks to the UNESCO Leaders’ Forum by Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines

Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines Paris, France November 17, 2015 Mr. President of the General Conference, President of the Executive Board, Madam Director General, Excellencies, I have been asked to share with you a statement from President Obama, in light of the tragic events that took place here in Paris Friday evening. I also saw Secretary of ...
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Remarks by the Deputy Chief of Mission at the 50th IHP Anniversary

U.S. Contributions to the International Hydrological Program (IHP) of U.N. Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization On November 9, 2015, U.S. Mission to U.N. Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Deputy Chief of Mission Chris Hegadorn spoke on a panel of regional representatives at the Celebration of the 50th anniversary of UNESCO’s Water Programs and the ...
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Allocution du Secrétaire d’Etat Adjoint, Antony J. Blinken le 6 Novembre 2015

Monsieur le Président de la Conférence générale, Madame la Directrice générale, Mesdames et Messieurs les délégués, c’est un honneur pour moi de représenter les États-Unis lors de cette 38ème session de la Conférence générale, à l’occasion du 70ème anniversaire de l’UNESCO. J’apprécie l’opportunité qui m’est accordée de reconfirmer notre candidature pour la réélection au Conseil ...
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Explanation of Position on Vote on Item 8.3 Request for the Admission of the Republic of Kosovo to UNESCO

The United States stands alongside the 92 Member States voting in support of Kosovo’s UNESCO membership bid, and we are profoundly disappointed by the outcome of today’s decision. We believe that Kosovo would be a welcome partner in the important work we are doing at UNESCO, such as countering violent extremism through education, promoting the ...
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Explanation of Vote by Ambassador Nix-Hines on Item (197 EX/32)

The United States takes the floor to explain our “no” vote and to express our deep regret that, despite the momentum of goodwill shared among Member States throughout this Executive Board, we were once again presented with this highly politicized agenda item, which was even more inflammatory than previous items. We do appreciate the removal ...
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Statement by Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 197th Executive Board

Thank you Mr. President, President of the General Conference, Director General, Excellencies. In his speech to the United Nations General Assembly during its 70th Anniversary, President Obama highlighted the international community’s many accomplishments, including diplomatic cooperation between the world’s major powers, a global economy that has lifted more than a billion people out of poverty; ...
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San Antonio Missions Dedicated as UNESCO World Heritage Site

On July 5th, at the 39th Session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committeein Bonn, Germany, The San Antonio Missions were officially inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The 23rd World Heritage Site in the U.S, the Missions contain the nation’s largest collection of Spanish colonial architecture in North America. Built in the early 1700s, the Missions ...
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Remarks from United States Delegation

39th Session of the World Heritage Committee July 5, 2015 – Bonn, Germany Remarks from U.S. Ambassador to UNESCO, Amb. Crystal Nix-Hines,Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff and San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor. “Merci, Madame la présidente. C’est un plaisir d’être ici pour la première fois. We are honored to receive this inscription, and thank ICOMOS ...
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Statement by Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 196th Executive Board

Mr. President, Chairperson, Madam Director General, Excellencies.  I am going to speak in French, at least a little bit; so please bear with me, especially those who are native French speakers.  It is a pleasure to be here again with you for my second Executive Board. Much has occurred since our last meeting.  Shocking attacks ...
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Holocaust Remembrance Day 2015

January 27 is International Holocaust Remembrance Day and, in 2015, marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, a UNESCO World Heritage site.  More than 1.1 million people were killed in Auschwitz, including nearly 1 million Jews and tens of thousands of Poles, Roma and Sinti, ...
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U.S. Intervention on Education Beyond 2015

As one of the sixteen GEFI Champion Countries, the United States applauds UNESCO’s leadership on the Post-2015 education development agenda. Securing a stand-alone education goal, and a limited set of targets focused on access plus quality, will serve as a powerful instrument to help eradicate extreme poverty within a generation. As First Lady Michelle Obama ...
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Explanation of Vote for Middle East Items

The United States takes the floor to explain our “No” vote and express our profound disappointment in the renewed politicization of these agenda items.  We understand these are difficult issues – but the harsh nature of these resolutions only distracts from the positive work of UNESCO; it belies the founding principles of this organization and ...
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Explanation of Position- Follow-up on the situation in the autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine)

As a co-sponsor, the United States expresses our strong support for this important resolution and the commitment of UNESCO and its member states to advance respect for freedom of expression, support equal access to education for all, and protect and preserve cultural heritage. Respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights and fundamental ...
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Statement by Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines to the 195th Executive Board

Mr. Chairman, Madame Director General, Mr. President, and Distinguished Colleagues, I’m so honored to be here with you for my first Executive Board session. After President Obama announced my nomination, friends asked me one of three questions:  “What exactly is UNESCO?”  “Isn’t UNESCO that controversial political group?”  And for those familiar with UNESCO, “How are ...
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Ambassador Nix-Hines Presents Her Credentials to UNESCO

  On Friday August 8, 2014, the United States Permanent Representative to UNESCO, Ambassador Crystal Nix-Hines, presented her credentials to UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova. Ambassador Nix-Hines and Director-General Bokova discussed their shared desire for robust U.S. engagement at UNESCO and highlighted key priorities such as girls’ and women’s education, tolerance building, cultural preservation, and public-private ...
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Crystal Nix-Hines is Sworn in as U.S. Ambassador to UNESCO

On July 16, 2014, Crystal Nix-Hines took the oath of office as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), in the Benjamin Franklin State Dining Room at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C. Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, a friend and former colleague of the Ambassador, ...
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Monumental Earthworks of Poverty Point, Louisiana Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site

On Sunday, June 22, the Monumental Earthworks of Poverty Point, Louisiana, became the 22nd U.S. site to be inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.  Inscription is a reflection of the “outstanding universal value” of Poverty Point, which “bears a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to a civilization which is ...
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The United States helps to launch “historic” exhibit at UNESCO on the history of the Jewish People in the Holy Land

On June 11, 2014, the U.S. Mission participated in the launch of People, Book, Land — The 3,500 Year Relationship of the Jewish People to the Holy Land, a joint project by UNESCO and the Simon Wiesenthal Center, at UNESCO headquarters in Paris.  The exhibit, co-sponsored by the United States, Canada, Israel and Montenegro, retraces ...
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International Jazz Day 2014 Demonstrates Program’s Global Reach and Importance for Cultural Diplomacy

On April 30, 2014, the world came together to celebrate the 3rd annual International Jazz Day with live performances, conferences and discussions held in each of UNESCO’s 195 Member States. The official Jazz Day celebration — held in Osaka, Japan, and attended by USUNESCO Chargé d’Affaires Beth Poisson — featured daytime educational activities at the ...
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Explanation of Vote for EX/32, Follow-Up by UNESCO of the Situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine)

This resolution should not have been controversial.  It was grounded in principles that provide the foundation for international stability in law.  Article 2 of the UN Charter — the prohibition on the use of force to acquire territory, and respect for sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Member States — these are the principles ...
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Explanation of Vote for EX/5.4, Follow-up relating to the Ascent to the Mughrabi Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem

We take the floor to explain our vote and express our disappointment that the parties and this Executive Board could not find meaningful consensus on this item. Without the consensus of all parties involved, this resolution distracts from the positive work of the Organization, and harms efforts to promote a positive atmosphere for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. ...
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Statement by Chargé d’Affaires Beth Poisson to the 194th Executive Board

Madam Director General, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Let me start by welcoming the Chair and pledging our cooperation. As we look at the state of the world today, we see that the fundamental freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly are under assault in many regions.  UNESCO has a unique and critical role to play in ...
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With Monuments Men Screening, USUNESCO Highlights Importance of Protecting Cultural Property

The U.S. Mission to UNESCO organized a screening at UNESCO Headquarters of Monuments Men, the George Clooney-directed film which highlights the role of an international unit of museum directors, curators, art historians, artists, architects, and educators from thirteen countries, who recovered and restituted nearly 5 million art works and historical objects that were confiscated and ...
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Statement Regarding the Loss of Voting Rights of the United States in UNESCO’S General Conference

Madam Director-General, Mister President, I would like to thank you, Director-General Bokova, for your strong, moving and eloquent statement of support for the relationship between the United States and UNESCO.  At this important moment in UNESCO’s history, I would like to respond briefly on behalf of the United States. As I noted in my national remarks ...
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U.S. Statement at the 37th General Conference as Delivered by Ambassador David Killion

Madam Director-General, Madam Chair, fellow delegates, UNESCO has faced its share of both good times and challenging times.  Today, we find ourselves in one of those challenging periods.  I assure you:  No one appreciates the seriousness of the challenges this organization is currently facing better than my government; however, it is important to remember that ...
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Explanation of Vote by Ambassador Killion on Middle East Resolutions Targeting Israel

We are very disappointed that this body, the UNESCO Executive Board, rather than live up to its lofty goals to build peace in the minds of men and women, once again chose to needlessly politicize these issues before us. At a time when my country is working to foster communication and dialogue across the globe ...
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Statement by Ambassador David Killion to the 192nd Executive Board

Director General Bokova, Fellow Permanent Representatives and Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen, This is the ninth time that I have addressed a UNESCO Executive Board on behalf of President Barack Obama and the United States of America.  It is also the final time that I will address you. Often in these statements I have recalled the ...
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Statement by Ambassador David Killion on the Destruction of Syrian Cultural Heritage

The United States fully supports the statement made by the Ambassador from Turkey and categorically rejects the claims made by the delegate from Syria. The United States strongly condemns the destruction of Syria’s cultural heritage, most recently, the reports of the destruction of the minaret of the iconic Umayyad mosque in the ancient city of ...
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Statement by Ambassador David Killion in Connection with the Agreement on Cultural Heritage in the Middle East

When President Obama visited the Middle East last month, he insisted that “peace is possible” but also challenged us to “create the change we want to see.”  Here, we have met his challenge by overcoming politicization at UNESCO. Today, this organization has accomplished what no one else could.  In the spirit of dialogue and cooperation ...
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Statement by U.S. Ambassador David Killion to the 191st Executive Board

Madam Chair, Madame Director General, Excellencies, Colleagues, Friends, UNESCO is an organization founded on hope – hope of a better world, hope that we can overcome conflict, hope that we can move forward together.  At the last Executive Board, thanks to the Russian Ambassador, and with support from the United States and many other countries, ...
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Statement by U.S. Ambassador David Killion to the 190th Executive Board

Madame Chair, Madame Director-General, Excellencies, Colleagues, Friends, We meet today at a critical moment for the future of the world’s cultural heritage.    The ancient markets of the Old City of Aleppo lie in ruins, Sufi shrines in Libya have been desecrated and historic mausoleums in Timbuktu have been destroyed. How are we to respond to ...
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Explanation of Vote for Agenda Item 24, Response of UNESCO to the Situation in the Syrian Arab Republic

Thank you Mr. Chairman, The United States is profoundly disappointed that this resolution does not call for the outright removal of Syria from the Committee on Conventions and Recommendations – something for which we have repeatedly called for.  We agree with Director-General Bokova that, given the actions of the Assad regime, it is not clear ...
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U.S. Statement in Explanation of Vote on Resolution DR 9 Regarding the UNESCO-Obiang Nguema Mbasogo International Prize for Research in the Life Scien

Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. The approval by this body of this Resolution urging the Director General to implement the Obiang Prize will be in vain. We recall that the Director General and her representatives have told this body and told the working group numerous times that the prize cannot be implemented. Mr. Chair, ...
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Statement by Ambassador David Killion to the 189th Executive Board

Madame Chair, Director-General Bokova, Excellencies, Colleagues, Friends: We are all keenly aware of the serious challenges that UNESCO and its member states have been facing over the past few months.  The road has been difficult, and still more obstacles lie ahead, but I am confident that we can – and will – rise to the ...
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U.S. Statement in Explanation of Vote on Draft Resolution 9.1 Regarding Membership for Palestine in UNESCO

Thank you, Madame Chair. The United States has voted against Resolution 9.1 because we cannot accept the premature Palestinian admission for membership in a United Nations specialized agency such as UNESCO. No nation is more committed to the quest for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians than the American people.  As President Obama said ...
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U.S. National Statement, as delivered by U.S. Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter

Madame Chair, fellow delegates, Since the General Conference last convened, great things have happened at UNESCO.  UNESCO has taken a central role in the UN system.  It has strengthened its partnerships with private sector partners that support its work.  We have all witnessed the incredible transformations imagined and brought to fruition by Director-General Bokova and ...
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