Marciulionyte withdraws candidacy for UNESCO director-general

  • 2009-09-21
  • TBT Staff in cooperation wtih Lithuania MFA

Marciulionyte withdrew to ensure of joint EU candidate is selected

PARIS- On Sept 18 during the second round of the election to the post of theDirector-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and CulturalOrganization (UNESCO), the joint candidate of the Baltic States Ambassador InaMarciulionyte received 4 votes out of 58.

A new head of the organization was not elected at the second round either.The frontrunner of this round was Farouk Hosny of Egypt. He received 23 votes whichis one vote more than during the previous round. Austria's Benita Ferrero-Waldnerwas given votes of 9 countries (two votes more than in the first round).

Lithuaniadecided to withdraw its candidate in order to ensure that a joint EuropeanUnion candidate is elected to the position of UNESCO's Director-General.Currently, such a candidate is B.Ferrero-Waldner who has received the largestnumber of votes among candidates from the EU member states.

According to Lithuania's Minister of ForeignAffairs Vygaudas Usackas, the situation needs to be estimated realistically. Lithuania as anEU member state urges all the EU countries to join forces and to vote for thecandidate from the EU.

In the opinion of the head of Lithuania'sdiplomacy, the participation of Ambassador Marciulionyte in the election ofUNESCO's Director-General was beneficial to the country.

"I would like to thank Ambassador Marciulionyteand all the diplomats who helped in promoting the name of Lithuania amongthe members of UNESCO and in spreading the ideas of policy for culture heritage,"said Minister Usackas.

The Bulgarian candidate Irina Bokova received 8votes (the same number of votes as in the first round), so did Ecuador'sIvonne Baki (7 votes in the previous round). The Russian Alexander Yakovenkowas given 3 votes, 4 votes less than in the first round of election. NoureiniTidjani-Serpos from Beninreceived 2 votes and representative of Tanzania Sospeter Muhongo received avote of one country 's the same scores that they had during the previous round.The Algerian Mohammed Bedjaoui who has been nominated by Cambodia didnot receive any votes.

The third round of election took place on 19September.

In order to win the election of UNESCO's Director-General the candidateneeds to receive at least 30 votes of the countries which currently are membersof the Executive Board. There are five election rounds possible in total. After the election at the Executive Board, the new Director-General willhave to be confirmed at the General Conference which is scheduled from 6 to 23 ofOctober.