Prof. Hubert Gijzen, UNESCO Regional Director for Eastern Africa meets HE OKANIWA Ken, Ambassador of Japan in Kenya

On 4 August 2022, Prof. Hubert Gijzen met with the His Excellency OKANIWA Ken, Ambassador of Japan in Kenya. Prof. Hubert took the opportunity to conveyed on behalf of UNESCO and in his own name the sincerest condolences on the unexpected death of former Prime Minister Abe.

The meeting provided an opportunity for UNESCO and Japan to strengthen their continued efforts on peace building in the minds of people, notably via the ongoing programmes in peace education and Global Citizenship education.

Prof. Hubert Gijzen thanked the Japan Ambassador for the strong cooperation between his Government and UNESCO, especially in the active projects supported by Japan in the region, such as the rehabilitation of the Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi Tombs in Uganda, Capacity building trainings on Underwater Heritage for Africa, Artificial Intelligence for water-related Disaster Risk Reduction, and other programmes.

Ambassador OKANIWA confirmed that the cooperation of UNESCO with his government is very strong and productive with impact for the Member States they jointly support. He also referred to a new area of work UNESCO has been proposing, which is focused on the severe water situation in Northern Kenya. He indicated that indeed this is a very relevant area and that he has shared this with his government. He recounted his experience in working on behalf of Japan on several sensitive files for nomination onto the UNESCO World Heritage List, and the Intangible Heritage programme.

The deliberations were fruitful, and they both agreed to continue discussions on expanding their cooperation and support to Kenya and the wider region.


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