Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the opening ceremony of the 10th International Forum of NGOs in Official Partnership with UNESCO

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26.11.2018

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Mr Sergeyev,

Colleagues,

Friends,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We are meeting on a very important occasion. I am grateful to the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Russian Peace Foundation for inviting me to speak at the 10th International Forum of NGOs in Official Partnership with UNESCO.

Amid the current situation on the international arena, your meetings contribute to the promotion of a positive, unifying agenda, and the search for answers to the numerous challenges of our time, as RAS President Alexander Sergeyev has explicated in his presentation. And ultimately, they strengthen the atmosphere of trust and mutual understanding between nations.

The relevance of today’s theme is hard to overestimate. It is “Science as common good of humankind.” The world is now going through a phase of rapid change; it needs the efforts of all those who are interested in ensuring sustained and stable development, including, of course, representatives from the academic community and the general public, more than ever.

The term “science diplomacy,” already used here today, is becoming not just a figure of speech, but a very popular form of promoting ideas on which the development of all humankind depends.

It is clear that UNESCO is an important contributor to resolving the problems we all face, and the most important humanitarian pillar of modern architecture, capable of effectively mobilising international research potential for the benefit of all states without exception. This especially applies to cyberspace, artificial intelligence, genetics, and many other areas where there are real risks of discoveries put to other than peaceful uses.

We appreciate the fact that you came to Moscow for the 10th International Forum of NGOs for science in official partnership with UNESCO. We see this as recognition of Russia’s significant role in achieving sustainable development goals. Our country will continue to actively participate in the world community’s efforts, including through the UN, the G20, BRICS, the SCO, UNESCO and other multilateral platforms.

We are pleased to welcome UNESCO Deputy Director-General Xing Qu, who will take part in your work.

As always, we firmly adhere to the assumption that the prosperous future of humankind is inseparably linked with building a more equitable and democratic polycentric system of global governance. Only in this way can we ensure equal and indivisible security for everyone in international relations without exception. We will continue to maintain a regular mutually enriching dialogue with the research and expert communities, as well as with other representatives of civil society. We will also encourage the undertakings of science and public diplomacy as much as possible.

Friends,

I am convinced that the upcoming discussions will be constructive, open, and friendly, and will contribute to the advancement of promising initiatives aimed at building up broad humanitarian and scientific cooperation for the benefit of the citizens of all our countries. We can’t wait to hear these ideas and are ready to study and develop them for use, now in official diplomacy.

I would like to wish you productive work, successful creative activity, and may all your plans be realised.