G20: Audrey Azoulay in Rio for foreign ministers’ meeting

Paris, 20 February 2024 – At the initiative of the Brazilian Presidency, this year UNESCO is contributing to the work of the G20 for the first time as a privileged partner. Its Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, will be in Rio de Janeiro on 21 & 22 February to take part in the foreign ministers’ meeting.

As UNESCO has experienced renewed momentum in recent years, the G20 has seen fit to include the organisation even more closely in its work. Since 2020, UNESCO has been invited to take part in several working groups, and has helped to ensure that education, culture, science and information are given greater prominence in the Leaders’ Declarations.

This cooperation reached a new milestone in 2024, at the initiative of the Brazilian Presidency: for the very first time, UNESCO was recognized as a privileged partner of the G20 and was involved in the entire process. Following the sherpas’ initial meeting with President Lula last December in Brasilia, UNESCO’s Director-General will take part in the meeting of foreign ministers this week in Rio de Janeiro.

On Wednesday 21 February, Audrey Azoulay will speak to ministers about the current response to international tensions. She will outline how UNESCO has stepped up its action in recent years to address conflicts such those in Yemen and Ukraine, and to support post-conflict recovery, as it does in Iraq. She will also explain how the Organization has managed to strengthen the cohesion of its Member States around its mandate, and to move towards greater universality, with the welcome return of the United States to UNESCO in 2023.

On Thursday 22 February, the Director-General will speak about the reform of global governance. She will detail UNESCO’s role in coordinating efforts to achieve quality education for all – one of the United Nations’ 2030 sustainable development goals. She will also present the Organization’s work in the field of new technologies, with the establishment in 2021 of the first global ethical framework for the use of artificial intelligence, and the publication in November 2023 of UNESCO’s Global Principles for Trustworthy Online Information.

Audrey Azoulay will also hold bilateral meetings with several foreign ministers.

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