Moushira Khattab - File Photo Moushira Khattab - File Photo

Countdown to UNESCO vote begins

Sun, Oct. 1, 2017
Cairo – 1 October 2017: The National Council for Women, activists, politicians and writers are supporting Egypt’s nominee in the UNESCO race, reports Reem Mahmoud.
President of the National Council for Women (NCW) Maya Morsi and council members have renewed their support for Egypt’s nominee, Moushira Khattab, for the UNESCO director general post.

In a press release Morsi confirmed that Khattab is the most qualified candidate for the post. “Khattab is loaded with deep experience and profound qualifications, which would nominate her to take the highest national and international posts,” said Morsi.

Morsi hopes that Khattab would win the post. “Such a post never went before to any of the Arab countries. Egypt is the country that is most qualified for such a post due to its historical, cultural, political and social heritage, which goes back for thousands of years,” added Morsi.

Meanwhile, the campaign supporting Khattab for the UNESCO director general post held a press conference at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square to support her. The conference was attended by Ambassador Mohamed El Orabi, the campaign manager; Major General Tariq El Mahdy; veteran archeologist Zahi Hawass; Hossam Issa, head of the Identity Front; and a number of members of the House of Representatives.

During the conference, Mohamed Gharib, head of the Arab Advisors Union, said that the conference to support Khattab coincides with Egyptian governmental directives to support its candidate for the post of Director-General of UNESCO.

He pointed out that “there is a great response from member states of the union and non-members to support Egypt’s candidate.” Gharib stressed that Khattab is the right person for the right place.

The conference comes just days before the UNESCO voting, which is scheduled to take place from October 9-12, where Khattab will have the confidence of 58 eligible members of the Arab League, including seven Arab countries with the right to vote (Egypt, Morocco, Sudan, Qatar, Lebanon, Oman and Algeria).

On his turn, Secretary-General of the Federation of Tour Guides Farag Al-Sayyed said that the nomination of Ambassador Khattab as Director-General of UNESCO was the best choice for Egyptian and Arab women, because this will help to positively change the image of women in the region.

During the Egyptian Museum conference, Sayyed said that the candidacy of Khattab is considered a nomination for all Egyptians, noting that the union stands with all its strength behind the Egyptian candidate.

For his part, economic expert Yousra Al-Sharqawi, who was attending the conference, said that the nomination of Khattab represents a message from Egypt to the world that she chose the path of culture and civilization to cross the world. He thanked the political leadership for nominating a woman for this important position, especially Khattab due to her high competence, ability and international presence.

Meanwhile, Gharib said that the federation has been working for almost a month through the General Secretariat of the Federation, in liaison with the offices of the Federation of Arab States in support of Khattab.

Gharib said that the federation launched a website in 31 languages to support the Egyptian candidate, pointing out that the Secretariat of the General Union will travel to the UAE tomorrow to hold meetings there in support of Khattab.

Nine candidates are competing for the post, including Egypt's Khattab, who won the support of the African countries; Lebanese official candidate Vera Khoury, who has been working for UNESCO for 20 years; former Qatari Minister of Culture Hamad Abdul Aziz Al-Kawari, adviser to the Emir of Qatar for cultural affairs; and French Audrey Azoulay.
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