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H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser with Unesco Director General, Irina Bokova, at the first Global Education For All meeting held at Unesco headquarters in Paris, yesterday.PIC: MAHER ATTAR
Paris: H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Science (QF) Board and the Unesco Special Envoy for Basic and Higher Education yesterday called on global education leaders to step up their action to provide access to quality education for the world’s hardest-to-reach children.
Sheikha Moza was the keynote speaker at the Global Education For All (EFA) meeting at the Unesco headquarters in Paris. This ministerial-level meeting seeks to drive forward progress towards reaching the EFA goals of providing universal access to education.
“Humanity will not overcome the immense challenges we face unless we ensure that children get the quality education that equips them to play their part in the modern world,” she said.
Highlighting current situations in Gaza and Syria, Sheikha Moza stated that the challenges facing education are immense.
“Events happening right now in my region clearly show that the right to education is still endangered. Just look at the situation of students in the Gaza Strip, in Syria and in similar conflict areas. Education is not being protected from the wider issues affecting a country or a society,” she said.
Sheikha Moza urged leaders to build on the momentum generated by recent initiatives including Education First, launched by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in September, and ‘Educate A Child’, launched by Sheikha Moza on 14 November.
“Over the last few months we have discovered a new energy. Today, I call on you to make use of this energy. I count on you to increase your efforts to meet our commitments. I urge you to use the discussion over the coming days to focus on accelerated actions that will enable us to meet our goals.”
In order to build on this momentum, Sheikha Moza proposed to host the next EFA meeting in Doha in April 2013: “I invite you to share progress, to come with specific plans and to show the outcomes of today’s important meeting. I invite you to demonstrate that we are living up to our promise in concrete and practical ways.” QNA