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Seminar of Cultural Diversity to be Held in Iran

Tehran, 15 March 2006 (CHN) -- UNESCO's national commission in Iran will hold a seminar on the Cultural Diversity Week from 17-23 March 2006 in Tehran, during which issues related to cultural diversity will be discussed and studied by different cultural, legal, and economical authorities and experts.

The UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity, adopted unanimously by the 185 Member States represented at the 31st session of the General Conference in 2001 in the wake of the events of September 11, 2001, is the founding act of a new ethic being promoted by UNESCO at the dawn of the 21st century. For the first time the international community is provided with wide-ranging standard-setting instrument to underpin its conviction that respect for cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue is one of the surest guarantees of development and peace.

On 20 October 2005, the UNESCO General Conference approved the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. The context of this convention has been translated to Persian by Iranian experts to be submitted to Iran's
Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution to consider joining the convention.

The Cultural Diversity Seminar will provide an opportunity for experts and authorities to get familiar with different aspects and role of this convention in preserving cultural diversity in different nations. Preserving the cultural heritage and promoting different cultural productions by countries against the influence of mass cultural productions of minority countries such as the United States which has caused a lot of concern in this respect is the main aim of this convention.

There are some questions about the consequences of the convention on Cultural Diversity such as Iran's role against cultural invasion.

UNESCO's national commission is following the issues of Cultural Diversity. According to the public relations of this commission, "an appropriate condition will be provided for journalists and reporters to have access to the necessary and valid information."

Regarding cultural diversity, Iran is considered an ethnically diverse country, with Persians forming the majority of the population. The main ethno linguistic minority groups in Iran include the Azaris, Kurds, Baluchis, Turkmen, Armenians, Assyrians, Persian Jews and Kurdish Jews. The tribal groups include the Bakhtiaris, Khamseh, Lurs, Qashqai, etc.

Though many of the tribal groups have become urbanized over the decades, some continue to function as rural tribal societies. Many of these ethnic groups have their own languages, cultures, and often literature. Their differences occasionally emerge as political ambitions. Some of these groups are also religious minorities. For example the majority of Kurds and Baluchis are Sunni Muslims, while the state religion in Iran is Shiite Islam. One of the major internal policy challenges during the centuries up until now for most or all Iranian governments has been to find the appropriate and balanced approach to the difficulties and opportunities caused by this diversity.

... Payvand News - 3/17/06 ... --

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