Minister Paradis Promotes Canada’s Priorities at International Organisation of La Francophonie and UNESCO in Paris

November 9, 2013 - The Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and Minister for La Francophonie, concluded a visit to Paris from November 7 to 9, during which he attended the 29th session of the Ministerial Conference of La Francophonie.

“Canada is proud to be a member of La Francophonie, because this organization promotes our country’s linguistic duality and deep commitment to the values of peace, democracy and human rights,” said Minister Paradis. “Canada will continue to play a leading role within the organization to advance sustainable development, solidarity and economic growth.”

On the margins of the Ministerial Conference of La Francophonie, Minister Paradis met with representatives of Tunisia, Cameroon, Nigeria and Vietnam, as well as of CONFEJES (Conférence des ministres de la Jeunesse et des Sports de la Francophonie [conference of ministers of francophonie youth and sports]) and TV5Monde. He also met with the rectors of the University of Senghor and Agence universitaire de la Francophonie, as well as with His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslims. In Paris, the Minister also attended the 37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO, where he delivered Canada’s national statement.

“To build a stronger, safer and more prosperous and peaceful world, we must ensure that women and girls are full participants in every area of society,” said Minister Paradis. “Canada is an active member of UNESCO and will continue to promote freedom of expression, the rights of women and girls, and a program based on sound management and results.”

Minister Paradis concluded his visit to Paris by announcing $1.5 million in Canadian aid to Senegal to help organize the next Francophonie summit, to take place in Dakar in November 2014. One of the forms this support will take is in the area of technical advice.

Before returning to Canada, Minister Paradis will visit Senegal from November 10 to 13 to emphasize Canada’s support for the Senegalese people and to convey to President Macky Sall Canada’s desire to assist Senegal in its efforts to stage this major summit.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Margaux Stastny
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of International Development and Minister for La Francophonie
819-953-6238
margaux.stastny@international.gc.ca

Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
613-995-1874
media@international.gc.ca
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