The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud today sent a message to the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Mr. Federico Mayor-Zaragoza, on the occasion of its fiftieth anniversary. King Fahd emphasized the support rendered to UNESCO by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which continues to provide assistance to the various activities and programs of the Paris-based organization. The Saudi monarch congratulated the Director-General on the golden jubilee of UNESCO and expressed the hope that the organization would succeed in its projects for peace and development through the noble objectives for which it was set up. King Fahd said that the Kingdom, one of the founding states of UNESCO, participated in the London conference held late in 1945 during which the constituent charter was formulated, and on March 26, 1946, endorsed the Charter when King Abdul Aziz signed the relevant documents. Since then, cooperation between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and UNESCO has continued smoothly in the framework of the understanding expressed by King Abdul Aziz that this mutual cooperation be conducted in the framework of the Islamic teachings being implemented by the Kingdom.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, stated King Fahd, is among the first member states to honor their financial obligations towards UNESCO, and in certain cases has even allocated additional funds to support its activities. In 1975, the King said, Saudi Arabia contributed to UNESCO’s budget a total of U.S. $ 4.6 million after some countries withdrew their membership, and in 1978 the Kingdom presented a similar donation with an additional U.S. $1 million for the support of projects in certain African countries. There was another donation for the renovation of the Holy Islamic Shrines in Palestine, and also, U.S. $ 20 million for the rebuilding of Alexandria Library.
In addition to financial support, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has effectively participated in various conferences and activities sponsored by UNESCO.
Highlighting UNESCO’s performance over the last fifty years, and confirming anew that the Kingdom would continue to support the functions of the organization, King Fahd expressed the hope that it would be able to serve all its member states and realize its noble objectives for serving peace through education, science and culture.