The Director General of UNESCO Irina Bokova and the Bulgarian Minister of Culture Boil Banov signed a new agreement on the continuation of operation of UNESCO Regional Center for ICH in Sofia
UNESCO Director General Ms. Irina Bokova and the Culture Minister Mr. Boil Banov signed an agreement in Paris to continue the operation of the Regional Centrе for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in South-Eastern Europe under the auspices of UNESCO in Sofia.
The agreement is for a new six-year period.
The Regional Center in Sofia unites the efforts of 16 Southeast European countries to promote and implement the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage: Albania, Armenia,the Former Republic of Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Cyprus, Moldova, Slovenia, Serbia, Turkey, Croatia, Montenegro and Ukraine.
The signing of the new agreement was in the presence of the Bulgarian Ambassador in France H.E. Angel Cholakov, H.E. Ambassador Atanas Mladenov, a Deputy Permanent Representative of the Permanent Delegation at UNESCO, the Deputy Secretary General of UNESCO for Culture Francesco Bandarin, diplomats and representatives of cultural institutions.
Ms. Irina Bokova admitted that this day is very emotional for her, as this is the last day for her as a UNESCO Director General and said she is glad that the Bulgarian Minister of Culture attends it. She also said the events have evolved in the last two weeks and there are many good news about Bulgaria and the new one is that Bulgaria was elected once again to the Executive Council of UNESCO with a very large number of votes. Another good news is that Gabrovo as a town of crafts now is part of the Creative Cities Network of UNESCO, which counts over 100 cities in the world.
Ms. Bokova pointed out that for the first time from 2011 when ”Enina Apostolos” was inscribed, this year Bulgaria has two new inscriptions in the program “Memory of the World” with “The Synodicon of King Boril” and the “Gospels of Tsar Ivan Alexander”- two very important documents from the world heritage.
“I am very pleased that and this is a gift for me that in these last two weeks of my mandate in UNESCO, Bulgaria had the opportunity to show itself on the map of the world in more convincing way,” Director General said.
Irina Bokova expressed her gratitude for the support of the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture and said that this is part of a huge work that UNESCO does on the ground to preserve the cultural heritage and has always believed that Bulgaria and the region do not just have something to give but will be a very active part in this process.
In connection of the newly signed six years agreement on the continuation of the UNESCO Regional Center for ICH in Sofia, Minister Boil Banov pointed: “The new agreement is a gift to us because such a center is a great achievement, not to mention how it fits into the new policies that the Presidency cabinet once again sets for the Western Balkans as part of the entire European family. So this center is also a big responsibility and in fact the gift is for us, “said Minister Boil Banov.
Later today was the official ceremony dedicated to Irina Bokova after two mandates as a Director General of UNESCO.