Seoul, Republic of Korea

3 February 2014

Secretary-General's video message on the Sixtieth Anniversary of the Korean National Commission for UNESCO

Secretary-General Min Dong-seok, Honourable members of the Korean National Commission for UNESCO, Distinguished guests,

I am delighted to send greetings on the occasion of the sixtieth anniversary of your foundation.

Days after joining UNESCO in 1950, Korea was plunged into civil war.

Schools were destroyed.  I was one of many children with no classroom.

But we still had the hunger to learn.

Thanks to UNESCO and other UN organizations we received books and learning.

We were given hope and the building blocks of a better life.

To this day, this is what the United Nations delivers around the world.

You are contributing to this effort throughout the region and beyond.

For that you deserve special thanks.

Education, science and culture are not luxuries.

They are the foundations of peace, security and improved well-being.

I commend your efforts over six decades, and I welcome your vision for the future.

Together, let us continue supporting peace and sustainable development for all humanity.

Thank you.