UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova has praised Vietnam’s full and successful implementation of commitments to the organisation over the past time.

Bokova emphasized the unique historical culture of Vietnam, with a close combination of history and culture, at a meeting in Paris on April 15 with Deputy Foreign Minister and President of the Vietnam National Commission for UNESCO, Nguyen Thanh Son.

She cited as an example the Hung King Veneration Rituals in Phu Tho province which was recognized as part of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity.

Earlier the same day, Deputy FM Son delivered a speech at the 191st plenary session of the UNESCO Executive Council, in which he affirmed Vietnam ’s support for UNESCO reform efforts to improve the efficiency of its operation and enhance the organisation’s position and role.

He praised UNESCO for giving high priority to the “Education for All” (EFA) movement as well the organisation’s leading role in implementing the initiative “Education first” proposed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

“Education first” is the first important step to effectively carry out the EFA and the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), he said.

The Vietnamese representative said Vietnam has made progress in carrying out the EFA and ESD, and is ready to share its experience in this field with others.

On this occasion, Son affirmed Vietnam’s support of the signing of a framework agreement on cooperation between ASEAN and UNESCO, which he said will create an important legal foundation to enhance cooperation between UNESCO and the ten-nation group as well as between the organisation and each ASEAN member country.

As Vietnam currently holds the chair of Southeast Asian Minister of Education Organisation (SEAMEO) Council, Deputy FM Son briefed the meeting on outcomes of the 47th SEAMEO Council Conference which was held in Vietnam from March 19-21.

The 191 st session of the UNESCO Executive Council is taking place from April 10-26.

As one of the three major organs of UNESCO, the Executive Council is tasked with making policies and strategies and discussing budge-related issues. Vietnam has become a member of the 158-member body for the tenure of 2009-2013.-VNA